Health officials struggle to get more Idaho young people vaccinated

At present, the only option for 12-15 year olds in the Pfizer vaccine. And getting the vaccine to rural areas remains a challenge.

BOISE, Idaho – As summer approaches, Idaho health officials are concerned about a trend that shows fewer people in the state are receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

“We saw the overall doses administered Said Director of Health and Wellness Dave Jeppesen. However, the number of first doses increased in the first two weeks.

Jeppesen spoke to reporters on Tuesday afternoon in a question-and-answer session on how Idaho is progressing in the battle to control the coronavirus and get shots fired.

One of the biggest concerns is getting the young people of Idaho vaccinated. At present, the only option for 12-15 year olds in the Pfizer vaccine. Introducing the vaccine to rural areas remains a challenge.

RELATED: Moderna Says COVID Vaccine is Safe, Highly Effective in Children 12-17 Years Old

“The challenge with the Pfizer vaccine has been that of course you have to have a specialized freezer,” said state epidemiologist Dr. Christine Hahn. “You have to keep really large amounts at one because the trays, right now, the dose, I think, is 1,175 doses, and you know not everyone feels like they can use that. so much, then they’re only very big. “

Hahn said some communities in Idaho didn’t have the Pfizer vaccine and people had to find a way to get it. She said local health districts are working hard to do whatever they can to make it as easy as possible for people to get vaccinated.

Some have wondered about the incentives to get vaccinated. Other states like Oregon offer lottery prizes and giveaways to people who get a chance. This question was posed to Idaho officials on Tuesday.

“I will say that at the state level we are looking at everything we can to get people and encourage people to get vaccinated, so I would say nothing is out of place,” said Elke Shaw- Tulloch, public health administrator.

When the vaccine was made available to Idaho’s youth aged 12 to 15, there was an initial increase in the number of children vaccinated.

“We’ve seen a small explosion of enthusiastic parents and you know we’re already seeing declines and we’re very worried about dropping out of school, and you know getting the shot is the last thing everyone cares about during. summer, and we’re very concerned that people are losing interest in it, and we have a lot of work to do before school starts, ”said Dr Hahn.

“We encourage parents to strongly consider having their children 12 and older immunized,” Jeppesen said. “Doing it before school starts in the fall will greatly increase the chances that school can return to normal.”

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