Prevent another COVID-19 peak by getting your kids vaccinated, CPS and public health officials urge | Chicago News – Community News
Covid-19

Prevent another COVID-19 peak by getting your kids vaccinated, CPS and public health officials urge | Chicago News

(WTTW news)
(WTTW news)

Although the COVID-19 vaccine is now approved for younger children, Chicago could find itself in the midst of another wave of coronavirus this winter if families wait too long to get their children vaccinated, the city’s top doctors said Tuesday.

Chicago Public Schools is canceling classes for a “vaccination-making day” on Friday, and Dr. Chicago Department of Public Health commissioner Allison Arwady is urging families in the city to get their children vaccinated as soon as possible.

“I really don’t want families here to fall into the ‘I’ll wait and see’ trap, which I’m a little concerned about,” she said. “Right now, cases are already on the rise — which isn’t unexpected given the weather, given what we’re seeing around us — and we know the impact having unvaccinated children in schools has had.”

Chicago has seen an increase in both the daily number of cases (382 new cases per day, up 21% from last week) and positivity rate (2%, up from 1.7% last week), per CDPH survey. data, although the number of hospitalizations and deaths are both declining.

CPS said last week it would cancel classes this Friday to give students and families a chance to get the vaccine, a move, district CEO Pedro Martinez called Tuesday “an investment for the rest of the school year.”

“One of the concerns I have is that as we’ve seen cases increase, it’s not only leading to more children getting cases, but a significant number of children being quarantined,” Martinez said. “So again, I urge our families, please take advantage of that weekend from Thursday through Sunday to get your kids vaccinated because we want to have a strong second semester and I want to have stability in the classrooms.”

CPS students already had a planned day off on Thursday in connection with Veterans Day.

The district’s “vaccine awareness day” came after the COVID-19 vaccine was officially approved for children ages 5 to 11. Arwady said Tuesday that the vaccine in trials reduced the risk of COVID-19 for children in that age group by 91% with no serious side effects.

CPS is planning more than 100 vaccination events in November and December, Martinez said Tuesday. But the district will not cancel a second day of class in two weeks to give children a second dose. Martinez instead said CPS will work with families to make its mobile, school-based and regional clinics open and available so students can get that second vaccine.

The district also plans to educate students and families who are not receiving the vaccine this week, as well as provide them with information about the safety of the vaccine.

In addition to the canceled classes on Friday, city employees will also be given two hours of paid leave that day to get vaccinated and their families.

And all 5- to 11-year-olds are eligible for $100 in Visa gift cards when they receive their vaccine at CDPH events or clinics.

“If we can vaccinate a lot of students now, if we can get a lot of adults vaccinated and boosted for the holidays, now is the time to do that,” Arwady said. “We wait a month, we wait two months, we could be in the middle of a bigger wave. It’s too late to really double at that point, although of course we will.”

A map of available CPS vaccination sites is available here. In addition, CPS and CDPH are organizing several vaccination clinics this Friday:

–CDPH Uptown Immunization Clinic: 8am-4pm; Register online

–CDPH Greater Lawn Immunization Clinic: 8am-4pm; Register online

–Family Vaccine Clinic, Arturo Velasquez Institute: 9.00 am; Register online or by phone at 773-254-1400

–Little Black Pearl pop-up: 9am-4pm; Register online or welcome walk-ins at 1060 E. 47th St.

–CPS, Chicago Vocational Career Academy: 9am-4pm; Register online

–CPS, Clark High School: 9am-4pm; Register online

–CPS, Richards High School: 9am-4pm; Register online

–CPS, Roosevelt High School: 9am-4pm; Register online

– Family Vaccination Clinic, Harmony Community Church: 9am-6pm; Register online

–CPS, Chavez Elementary School: 10 a.m. to noon; Register online

–CPS, Kenwood High School: 10am – 12pm; Register online

–CPS, Mitchell Elementary School: 10am-12pm; Register online

–CDPH CareVan Nixon Elementary School: 10am-12pm; Register online

Contact Matt Masterson: @ByMattMasterson | [email protected] | (773) 509-5431