The number of those getting vaccinated continues to increase. As of November 4, the percentage of eligible to be vaccinated Santa Barbara County residents is 71.5%. View the Santa Barbara County Community Data Dashboard here.
There have been a lot of developments over the last few weeks. Not only have Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson all been approved for booster shots, but children ages 5 to 11 years are now eligible to receive the vaccine. Also, the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department has extended the indoor mask mandate as transmission level in the County is not yet classified as Low.
COVID-19 Vaccination Available for Children 5 to 11 Years of Age
The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) endorsed recommendations that children 5 to 11 years old be vaccinated against COVID-19 with the Pfizer-BioNTech pediatric vaccine on November 2, 2021. This announcement follows the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) authorization of the pediatric vaccine the week prior. The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup has also approved these recommendations. With this authorization, approximately 42,000 children ages 5 through 11 are now eligible to be vaccinated in Santa Barbara County.
Local distribution of pediatric COVID-19 vaccines has already begun with full-scale availability anticipated the week on November 8. Vaccines will be available at pediatric healthcare provider offices, pharmacies, and through targeted community events at schools and other venues.
For information about the pediatric COVID-19 vaccine and countywide availability, please visit www.publichealthsbc.org/vaccine/ or call 2-1-1.
The full announcement can be found here.
Is It Time to Get Your COVID-19 Booster Shot?
By Dr. Henning Ansorg, M.D., FACP, Health Officer County of Santa Barbara, Department of Public Health
Last month, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Emergency Use Authorizations (EUA) for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 booster doses. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup followed suit and recommended a booster dose especially for persons over 65 and to persons with chronic medical conditions.
These decisions, as well as the authorization to allow for mixing and matching of COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers for boosters, will allow more Californians to increase and maintain a robust protection against infection heading into the winter months.
Learn more about booster shots here.
County Extends Health Officer Order Requiring Use of Face Coverings Indoors
The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department has extended a Health Officer Order which requires the use of masks in indoor public settings. This order requires all individuals, regardless of vaccination status, to wear face coverings when indoors in public settings, with limited exceptions. This Order 2021-10.6 is in effect until 5 p.m. on December 4, 2021, or until it is extended, rescinded, superseded, or amended. Read the full announcement here.
For more information on COVID-19, including vaccines and testing, please go to https://publichealthsbc.org/.