LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Protesters and concerned parents disrupted a Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD) news conference Wednesday morning yelling, “Protect your children, do not comply.”
SNHD representatives announced they have begun administering the COVID-19 vaccine to children between the ages of five to eleven – even though COVID-19 tends to be milder in children.
The Health District says the disease can can still cause serious illness and encourage parents to have their eligible children vaccinated.
The full conference is below:
In Clark County, there have been 269 children hospitalized, 37,544 COVID cases in people between the ages of 5 and 17, and 92 cases of multi-inflammatory syndrome in children.
The SNHD says the vaccine is safe, effective and free. Before it was authorized for children, it was rigorously tested and the data from clinical trials was thoroughly reviewed.
According to SNHD, the Pfizer vaccine is more than 90% effective at preventing COVID-19 in children between the ages of five and eleven.
SNHD says getting children vaccinated means more in-person learning at school and a return to student pre-pandemic activities.
“Vaccinating children in this age group is a positive step in our efforts to minimize rates of transmission in Clark County and we can now provide protection to an additional 200,000 people in our community,” said Dr. Fermin Leguen, District Health Officer for the Southern Nevada Health District.
“We know some parents have questions about whether or not they should get their children vaccinated and I encourage them to discuss their concerns with their children’s pediatrician about the vaccine and the importance of getting their children vaccinated,” Leguen added.
“I’m looking right in the camera as a father of two. I have a two-year-old and a six-year-old and this is what we’ve been talking about for over a year now. But, this is a scary time, and for parents that are wondering what to do for their children. No matter where what side you fall on you want to make the very best decision for your child,” Brian Knudsen, City of Las Vegas Councilman said.
Representatives speaking at this event are as follows:
- Dr. Fermin Leguen, District Health Officer, Southern Nevada Health District
- Scott Black, North Las Vegas City Councilman
- Chair, Southern Nevada District Board of Health
- Brian Knudsen, City of Las Vegas Councilman
- Vice-Chair, Southern Nevada District Board of Health
- Dr. Cort Lohff, Chief Medical Officer, Southern Nevada Health District
- JoAnn Rupiper, Chief Administrative Nurse, Southern Nevada Health District
During the news conference, protesting could be heard nearby regarding the vaccination of children. One protester yelled repeatedly, “Shame on you, you have kids too.”
The health district and several local pharmacies have started administering vaccines to children. Pediatric vaccines are currently available on a walk-in basis until the appointment system is updated.
SNHD encourages anyone who has not been vaccinated to visit one of the many clinics available to initiate the vaccine series. People who have received their first of a two-dose vaccine series should return to a clinic to get their second dose to be fully vaccinated.