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LA County expands distribution of Novavax COVID vaccine

LOS ANGELES (CNS) — With the current blessing of federal regulators, Los Angeles County is increasing the supply of the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine to everybody aged 12 and over, the general public well being officer stated Thursday.

The U.S. Meals and Drug Administration authorised an emergency use authorization final week to be used of the vaccine in individuals aged 12-17, and the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention signed off this week. The vaccine had beforehand been restricted to individuals aged 18 and over.

Well being officers have expressed hope that the Novavax vaccine could be extra broadly accepted by vaccine-hesitant residents, since it’s primarily based on extra conventional protein-based know-how utilized in different drugs for many years — relatively than the mRNA course of employed by the Pfizer and Moderna COVID photographs.

Los Angeles County Well being Officer Dr. Muntu Davis stated the county is making the photographs accessible to individuals 12 and over. Officers in Lengthy Seaside — which has its personal well being division — additionally stated they have been instantly starting to supply the Novavax to the expanded age group.

“This growth will assist hold our kids secure — particularly as households put together to return to high school,” Lengthy Seaside Mayor Robert Garcia stated in an announcement. “We urge everybody to get vaccinated and guarded in the event that they have not already.”

Novavax can also be a two-shot routine, with the doses administered three to eight weeks aside, Davis stated. Booster photographs will not be at the moment really useful for individuals who obtain the Novavax vaccine, however Davis stated that might change.

Los Angeles County reported 3,042 new COVID infections on Thursday, together with 18 new virus-related fatalities. 

In the meantime the variety of COVID-positive sufferers in county hospitals dropped dramatically, with state figures placing the quantity at 802, down from 924 on Wednesday. Of these sufferers, 124 have been being handled in intensive care, up from 104 a day earlier.

County officers have stated that roughly 43% of the COVID-positive sufferers have been truly admitted for virus-related sickness, whereas the others have been admitted for different causes, with some solely studying they have been contaminated once they have been examined on the hospital.

Regardless of the large drop in COVID affected person numbers, Davis stated the county in current days has truly seen a slight uptick within the charge of virus-impacted sufferers being admitted to hospitals. In actual fact, the typical day by day charge rose to 9.6 per 100,000 residents — practically pushing the county again within the CDC’s “excessive” virus exercise degree. The county was beforehand within the “excessive” class, however moved again to “medium” three weeks in the past when the hospitalization charge fell beneath 10 per 100,000 residents.

The speed final week was 8.9 per 100,000 residents. Davis stated that given the regular downward pattern in COVID an infection charges, well being officers are hoping the current uptick in hospitalization charges is a short lived anomaly that can rapidly reverse.

The three,042 new COVID infections confirmed Thursday lifted the county’s total whole from all through the pandemic to three,392,984. The county-reported case figures are believed to under-count the precise variety of infections, since many individuals now depend on at-home checks, the outcomes of which are sometimes not relayed to county well being officers.

The 18 new virus-related fatalities elevated the county’s total demise toll to 33,076.

The common day by day charge of individuals testing optimistic for the virus was 9.4% as of Thursday, roughly the identical as the day gone by.

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