Vaccination against COVID-19 for children aged six months to five years will begin next Monday in Quebec, Public Health announced on Thursday.
• Read also: COVID-19 in Quebec: watch out for major events, says Public Health
• Read also: COVID-19: no new restrictions planned, warns Legault
• Read also: Quebec grants $25 million to Moderna
More than 70,000 doses of the Spikevax vaccine, from Moderna, are now available in Quebec.
“We have the necessary doses, assured Dr. Luc Boileau, national director of public health. This is good news for children, for parents who want to protect [them] from COVID. »
The only group in society that has still not been vaccinated, the 400,000 children aged six months to five years can therefore obtain an appointment now online on Clic Santé.
The Spikevax vaccine, from Moderna, received authorization from Health Canada last week.
According to Dr. Boileau, there is a "very good immune response" after two doses.
The gap between them must be two months.
Protecting the most vulnerable
The most vulnerable children, due to a medical condition, are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated.
“Even though the risk may seem low, it is not non-existent. There are cases of young children who develop the severe form of the disease and who require care, and we want to avoid that, ”analyzes Kevin l’Espérance, a graduate in epidemiology at the University of Montreal.
Currently, the variants that circulate [including BA5] are "much more contagious", notes Public Health.
“A positive person who has a normal life [without isolating themselves] can contaminate up to 16, said Dr. Boileau. The mask remains a tool which is very useful and which is appropriate these days. »
Vigilance is important, especially when experiencing symptoms, say experts.
"It's not just in Quebec that we are experiencing the wave," says Benoit Barbeau, virologist at the University of Quebec in Montreal. We must continue to be careful and do not hesitate to wear a mask. [...] There is no absolute zero risk. »
"Towards a plateau"
In the last week, the bar of 2,000 people hospitalized with COVID-19 has been crossed, show data from the National Institute of Public Health of Quebec.
However, less than 50% of positive patients are in hospital due to COVID-19.
Last spring, this rate could reach up to 80%.
According to projections by the National Institute for Excellence in Health and Social Services, hospitalizations should stabilize within two weeks.
"We're on our way to a plateau," Dr. Boileau said today.
The latter encourages people to get a booster dose of vaccine, when the last was five or six months ago.
HOSPITAL PATIENTS WHO HAVE COVID-19
DEATHS RELATED TO COVID-19 IN THE PAST WEEK
Source : INSPQ
Even if the seventh wave of COVID-19 continues to rage everywhere in Quebec, the government does not intend to put in place more sanitary measures.
"The situation is under control, but we must remain cautious," Prime Minister François Legault said today.
Also today, Quebec Public Health pointed out, at a press conference, that the holding of the Festival d'été de Québec (FEQ), where crowds pile up, has led to a strong spread of cases.
We therefore encourage people who have symptoms to isolate themselves, even if their rapid test result is negative.
"It's not the time with COVID to go partying, to go to festivals," said Dr. Luc Boileau, national director of public health.
The COVID-19 virus is contagious for 10 days, not five days, Public Health said today.
“You have to be concerned, and know how to protect others, reiterated Dr. Boileau today. We understand that people want to live and move on, [...] but the virus is still there. »
People who test positive are strongly encouraged to avoid contact during this time. When this is not possible, to go to the grocery store for example, people must wear the mask.
Remember that the main symptoms are similar to the flu (cough, fever, congestion and sore throat).
Although the plateau of the seventh wave is being reached, Quebec is not immune to a rapid resurgence of cases.
“It is likely that while the seventh wave is ending, another is coming, submits Benoit Barbeau, virologist at the University of Quebec in Montreal. Children will be vectors and people will go back to work. »
“The pandemic is definitely here. We do not control the virus, it is not cyclical in transmission, he says. It is still a process of adaptation, we have not finished seeing new variants and sub-variants. »