Lambton Public Health Planning for Childhood Immunization

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Lambton Public Health wants to know what local families think about COVID-19 vaccinations for young children once they become available.

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The public health agency launched an online survey of parents and guardians of children aged 5 to 11 on Monday.

It can be found at chkmkt.com/LPHParentVaccineSurvey and will be open until October 18.

“Lambton Public Health is reaching out to parents in the community for their preferences and concerns about COVID vaccines for children,” said Siobhan Churchill, epidemiologist with the Sarnia Area Public Health Agency.

“We really hope that as many parents as possible will respond to this survey so that we can take the information into account when planning vaccination clinics for children aged 5 to 11,” she said. “We expect that to happen soon.”

By noon on Tuesday, the online survey had already garnered 80 responses, Churchill said.

“While we don’t yet have a date when kids ages 5-11 will become eligible, we’ve been told to wait a little later this fall,” she said. “Planning is well advanced.”

Churchill said they are asking parents for their preference for a few different vaccination clinic options.

They include family-friendly clinics in the community, at their child’s school during or after school hours, a primary care provider, or through a pharmacy.

“We expect to provide several options for parents, and the survey results will help us tailor them,” Churchill said.

They also hope to find out if family preferences are different depending on whether they live in the Sarnia and Point Edward area, or elsewhere in Lambton, and if they have different preferences for older and younger children, he said. she declared.

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There are about 9,000 children between the ages of 5 and 11 living in Lambton County, Churchill said.

For young people aged 12 to 17 in Lambton, about 77% received a first dose of the vaccine, she said.

“So if we had 77% of those kids ages 5 to 11, that’s about 7,000 kids.”

Lambton Public Health said Tuesday there were 14 new local cases of COVID-19 for a total of 3,933 since the start of the pandemic.

The number of local active cases fell by nine from the previous day to 90. There have been 3,773 cases listed as resolved and 70 deaths since the start of the pandemic.

The agency was reporting four local outbreaks, and the Lambton-Kent District School Board and St. Clair Catholic District School Board were reporting a total of 11 cases at their Lambton County schools.

In addition to its online survey of parents and guardians, Lambton Public Health is also currently conducting a telephone survey with Ipsos Public Affairs.

“It’s something we do every year to get a sense of where the community is going,” Churchill said. “This year in particular, we are looking at mental health and comparing mental health at the start of the pandemic.

“And we also ask what the community thinks of public health measures, like vaccine passports, and how their family is doing in the fourth wave. We have questions about vaccine hesitancy and want to know what people think about our public health system.

This investigation has been ongoing for a few weeks and is expected to continue for several days.

“We would be delighted to encourage residents, if they receive this call, to participate,” Churchill said.

The results of the investigation will be published in a public report and posted on the agency’s website.

“We will use them to plan our programs and services over the coming year,” Churchill said.

pmorden@postmedia.com

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