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Hawaii is ready to offer booster shots

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Booster shots aimed at increasing resistance to COVID-19 (New Coronavirus Infection) Expected to start as early as next week, state health ministry officials are waiting for federal agencies to finally approve the shot and provide guidance on how to manage the shot.

The third dose of Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines was expected to be available to residents from the week of September 20, eight months after the second dose. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this applies to approximately 17,000 Hawaiian residents.

Ultimately, the state is expected to have to give additional injections to more than one million residents vaccinated this year within the next few months. Individuals who have received Johnson & Johnson Shot since March are also expected to be eligible for another dose.

However, last month’s announcement by President Joe Biden on booster shots is subject to approval from the US Food and Drug Administration, which is still pending and is the subject of hot debate among scientists.

On Monday, an international group of scientists, including part of the FDA, review We conclude that the available data on the coronavirus vaccine have not yet provided reliable evidence in support of booster immunization in the general population.

The paper, published in The Lancet, stated that booster shots may eventually be needed by the general public due to weakened immunity and new variants of the virus, but the introduction of boosters He warned that too early or too often could pose a health risk.

According to media outlets across the country, the authors of the treatise announced last month that they would leave the agency because they did not agree that Biden had requested a booster before the authorities reviewed the evidence and made recommendations. FDA scientists were included.

Biden’s announcement was also controversial. This is because the supply in the United States is strong, but many of the world’s population still do not have access to life-saving vaccines.

The FDA Committee is expected to meet on Friday to evaluate booster shots. According to local health authorities, the CDC Advisory Board usually makes recommendations afterwards.

As it shattered, the State Department didn’t know what to prepare for. For example, authorities aren’t sure if the FDA will approve the interval between the second and third shots of the same eight months that Biden previously announced, said Brooks Vale, a spokesman for the Department of Health. ..

“For example, I’m not sure if the CDC recommends booster shots for a particular age group before other age groups. There are a lot of questions, so I have to wait,” Baehr said. It is stated in.

When the shots were first available and highly coveted, the state made great efforts to set up vaccination sites throughout the state, but Baehr expected the state to have to do it again. I said I didn’t. Currently, more than 230 sites across the state provide vaccines, with more than 200 pop-up vaccination events scheduled for September.

The state also does not anticipate having to fight the limited supply of vaccines, as in the early days of deployment where the scale of shipments was carefully monitored.

As of Tuesday, the state had a vaccine dose of 188,000 on hand, Baehr said, which does not include the dose supplied by the federal agency. The state has the ability to administer more than 60,000 doses per week without opening additional vaccination sites.

Hospital officials are also preparing to provide booster shots, but they are also waiting for federal guidance.

Hawaii Pacific Health says it is ready to make booster shots readily available at the Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children on Oahu and the Wilcox Medical Center on-site vaccine clinic on Kauai, as well as the mobile vaccine clinic. , Hospital system. She also said Hawaii Pacific Health may open additional vaccine sites.

Since last month, the state has given a third dose of Pfizer BioNTech and Moderna vaccines to residents who are immunocompromised and whose body may not have a sufficient immune response to the virus.

To date, 10,790 residents have received one third dose of the vaccine, according to the state. data..

The management of a new layer of state immunization programs is due to local health authorities still working on a significant surge in COVID-19 cases due to the highly contagious delta mutation. Over the past two months, they have set up more testing sites, found additional medical oxygen supplies, imported over 600 nurses and other medical professionals, and struggled to set up a triage center. I had to.

The surge in cases appears to have leveled off, but health officials have warned that Hawaii’s cases and hospitalizations are still too high. On Tuesday, the Ministry of Health included 338 on Oahu, 23 on Maui, 41 on the Big Island, 14 on Kauai, 5 on Molokai, and two Hawaii residents diagnosed outside Hawaii. Reported 423 new Coronavirus infections. According to state data, hospitalizations decreased slightly to 357.

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