Pandemic Task Force: Pfizer authorization good news, more work remains

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ST. LOUIS–Not long after the CDC gave the final go-ahead needed to approve giving the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to children as young as 12, the head of the St. Louis Metropolitan Pandemic Task Force praised the development, and identified positive news on data coming in, while noting work remains before the region reaches herd immunity.

“It’s really exciting that we’re going to be able to offer vaccinations to more of the community with that approval of the Pfizer vaccine for those aged 12-15, but…there’s always a but, we still have work to do, there’s still a significant percentage of the population that is unvaccinated and are therefore at risk of serious disability and possibly death from what is really a completely preventable disease,” Dr. Alex Garza said in Wednesday’s briefing.

The region’s seven day rolling average on COVID hospital admissions stands at 32 patients, marking some of the best numbers seen since last summer. Dr. Garza said the transmission rate of the virus is also trending in the right direction.

Dr. Garza noted the barriers that still remain in reaching more of the population with the vaccine, either through information or transportation. The faster the region expands its vaccination rate, the faster the region can reach herd immunity, he said.

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