Practice/COVID-19 Update - June 2022
As always, the health and well-being of our patients and their families is our primary concern. With the upcoming approval of Covid 19 vaccines for children under age 5, we continue to stay current with the recommendations of the CDC, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), and the AAP. The start of a vaccination program for children under age 5 will depend on the independent Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the CDC process and timeline.
There are four things that need to happen, in the order below, before providers can administer the vaccine to children under age 5
1. FDA advisors must recommend authorization to FDA – completed
2. FDA must approve Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) – completed on 06/15
3. CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice (ACIP) must recommend vaccine use in children and provide specific details for administering to children (anticipated by 06/17)
4. Vaccine must be delivered via IDPH to our office. (If all of the above happen as anticipated, this action is estimated to occur the week of 06/20)
We are confident in the extensive research done on COVID-19 vaccines in children and the exhaustive review of clinical trial data by the FDA and CDC to ensure that only safe and effective vaccines are recommended for children. We also have been giving the Pfizer Covid 19 vaccine to older children since summer 2021 and have had no serious side effects. Our practice as well as the AAP strongly recommend that all children 6 months and older be vaccinated against COVID-19. While children generally do better with Covid-19 illness, they can still get very sick and die from this virus. Over 42,000 children have been hospitalized from Covid-19 since March 2020. We expect to hold Covid 19 vaccine clinics two days midweek as well as additionally on Saturdays and Sundays for most of July and August. We also plan on offering the Covid-19 vaccine at the time of your child’s well visit. We initially will be only offering the Pfizer vaccine for children under age 5 as we have had good outcomes with this vaccine for the older children.
As per the CDC regulations for health care facilities, all our staff continue to wear masks as well as being vaccinated against COVID-19. We are also requiring all adults and children over 2 to wear masks. We continue to check temperatures on all patients. We will try to limit time in the waiting room and take children quickly back to an exam room. While we do have separate healthy and sick waiting rooms as well as different exam rooms for well and sick children, we are still trying to eliminate the overlap of healthy and sick children in the office to better protect their health. We are requesting that if your child is sick for their well exam or has had a close covid-19 exposure in the last 7 days, you call the office to reschedule.
While we are continuing to see patients with COVID-19, there also are a lot of NON-COVID 19 viral illnesses affecting children with more families beginning to socialize. The providers and nurses are continuing to wear personal protective gear for our sick children as well as having only one provider and nurse see sick patients per shift. We do have the capability to test for COVID-19 if needed. Currently we have a rapid Ag and Molecular test for COVID-19 in the office as well as a PCR test for Covid-19, influenza, and RSV which takes about an hour to run.
Last but not least, we want to thank all of our patients who nominated our office as a finalist for “Best of the Best Pediatric Practices for 2022.” Voting is now open until July 5th to choose the top practice. We sincerely thank you for entrusting us with the health and well-being of your children. Your trust is a treasured honor. At Bedrose Pediatrics, we believe our families and the relationship we develop with them over time is what makes us so great!