Dominican Republic’s medical community open to vaccinating children under 12 years of age

The director of the largest pediatrics public hospital, the Dr. Robert Reid Cabral in Santo Domingo, and the president of the Dominican Medical Association (CMD) are open to vaccinating children 6 to 11 years. The Delta variant now in circulation in the Dominican Republic has been known to affect younger children more than the other strains.

The government has authorized that all schools open for in-person learning as of 20 September 2021. The Society of Pediatrics urges all children 12+ complete their vaccination schemes in time for the reopening of schools. In the Dominican Republic, the government has made available Pfizer vaccines for the inoculating of the children. Children may also get the Sinovac vaccine if this is the one available in their community.

The government in July began a mass program to inoculate children 12 years and older with Pfizer vaccines. The Dominican government has enough stocks to inoculate all the children of school age. Most Dominican adults have received two doses of Sinovac vaccines.

Dr. Clemente Terrero director of the Robert Reid hospital and Dr. Waldo Ariel Suero, president of the CMD recommended on Friday, 17 September 2021 that the Health Cabinet contemplate administering the Covid-19 vaccine to children six to 11 years.

Dr. Terrero urged close monitoring of the Delta variant. He said it could affect the child population now that classes are again open. He said the information is key to the decision of whether the younger children should get the Covid-19 vaccination jabs. Dr. Terrero is an infectious disease specialist. He argued that Chile has been vaccinating those over six years. “That is a probability that we have to think about,” said Dr Terrero.

Meanwhile, the president of the CMD, Dr. Suero says that more efforts need to be made to complete the vaccinating of the adult population for the country to reach herd immunity. He is open to then vaccinating children over six years old with the Sinovac vaccine as is being done in Chile.

Suero pointed out that if the administration of the vaccine to children six years of age and older is approved, parents should be required to vaccinate them in time to avoid spread of the disease due to the return to in-person learning in schools nationwide.

On her side, the president of the Society of Pneumology and Thoracic Surgery, Dr. Evangelina Soler recommended that both parents and teachers comply with the health protocols to avoid the infant’s contagion at school. “It is important for the population to keep in mind with face-to-face classes to maintain the sanitary recommendations of the proper use of masks, hand washing and physical distancing,” she said.

The specialist made a call to the population to get vaccinated and that those who feel any symptoms that may be related to coronavirus promptly isolate and seek medical care.

The Dominican government has made more than enough vaccines available for all residents in the Dominican Republic. There are around 1,400 vaccination sites where getting the jab takes less than half an hour. The vaccines are free.

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