PACIFIC COUNTY— Thousands of Pacific County residents became eligible for additional protection against covid-19 over the weekend, as federal, regional and state health regulators signed off on the expansion of booster shots for all people 18 and older.

All U.S. adults who received either of the three covid-19 vaccine types available in the country are newly eligible for booster shots. For people who are at least six months removed from receiving their second dose of Pfizer’s or Moderna’s vaccine, adults 50 and over should receive a booster dose and those 18-49 may receive a booster dose. All adults, regardless of age, should receive a booster dose if they received Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine two or more months ago.

Many already given

In Pacific County, 2,779 booster or additional doses have been given as of Nov. 20. Some 24.5% of all fully vaccinated individuals in the county have received a booster dose, with hundreds of booster doses being administered in the county each week since they became available.

A list of upcoming booster clinics in Pacific County can be found at www.pacificcountycovid19.com/get-vaccinated. Any of the three vaccines currently available for use may be administered as a booster dose, regardless of which vaccine was used for the primary series. When getting a booster shot, bring the vaccination card received after the initial dose or doses were received.

With about 58% of the county population receiving at least one covid-19 vaccine dose, local health officials are hopeful that the county can avoid last winter’s fate, when it was among the hottest spots in the country for coronavirus activity.

The initial post-Halloween returns have been promising, with the case rate per 100,000 people over a two-week period sitting at 234 as of Nov. 21. That’s marked improvement from this time last year, when the case rate was north of 1,000.

A total of 2,109 covid-19 cases have been reported in Pacific County since the pandemic began, along with 120 hospitalizations and 34 deaths.

Youth clinics open for business

Peninsula Pharmacies held its first youth Pfizer covid-19 vaccine clinic earlier this month, and is planning to hold a weekly clinic through the end of the year.

The clinic served a handful of children ages 5-11 at its first clinic on Nov. 9 but doubled those numbers at its Nov. 16 clinic, according to Amanda Berube, licensed practical nurse for Peninsula Pharmacies.

The weekly clinic will be held on Tuesdays from 12-5 p.m. at 117 Spruce St. E in Ilwaco, with appointments available to be scheduled at www.covidvaccine360.com. The clinic is currently the only clinic for kids under 12 being offered on the peninsula.

The dosage of Pfizer’s vaccine that is available to children ages 5-11 is one-third of the level of the drugmaker’s vaccine that is available to people 12 and older. Like that vaccine, this vaccine also calls for a two-shot series, with the second dose scheduled for three weeks after the first dose.

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