Roughly four in ten children between the ages of 5 and 11 in the Thompson-Okanagan have received a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Child vaccine uptake rates vary wildly across B.C. since the shot started being offered to kids in early December.
Parts of Vancouver and Victoria are reporting uptake rates as high as 75% while other regions — the Peace in northern B.C. and Kettle Valley in the southern interior — have yet to crack the 20% mark.
Here is a list of child vaccination rates for communities in the Thompson-Okanagan, as of Jan. 25.
- Penticton - 46%
- Kamloops - 45%
- Central Okanagan - 44%
- Summerland - 42%
- Vernon - 41%
- Oliver/Osoyoos - 34%
- Princeton - 34%
- Salmon Arm - 31%
- Keremeos - 30%
- Grand Forks - 30%
- Merritt - 25%
- Armstrong/Spallumcheen - 24%
- North Thompson - 23%
- Enderby - 22%
The highest child vaccination rates in the BC Interior are in Trail and Kimberley (54%). Vaccine coverage percentages for children are climbing steadily week by week.
Vaccination rates for those 12+ are around 90% for most of the large centres in the Thompson-Okanagan.
The risk of severe illness for children who catch COVID-19 is very low. From the start of the pandemic until Jan. 11, there have been 72 hospitalizations in the age group in 21,240 confirmed cases.
“What we are seeing is that five-to-11-year-olds, thankfully, remain at low risk of severe disease, but the number of children being hospitalized because of infections has gone up, as the number of infections has gone up across our communities," said provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Jan. 25.
“In addition, we have new and reassuring real-world safety data from millions and millions of young children who have been protected through vaccination."
For those parents awaiting invitations to book their child's second dose, Henry offered assurance that B.C.'s Get Vaccinated system will be sending those invites.
Want to get your child vaccinated?
In order to be vaccinated, five-to-11-year-olds must first be registered in B.C.'s Get Vaccinated system, after which time an invitation will be sent (by text or email) to book an appointment.
You can find all the information online at B.C.'s pediatric vaccine webpage, or call the central vaccination line at 1-833-838-2323.
with files from Vancouver is Awesome