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Hundreds of area children 12-15 receive first doses of COVID-19 vaccine; some parents may be hesitant

The number of Central Texas children from 12- to 15-years-of age who’ve received a first dose...
The number of Central Texas children from 12- to 15-years-of age who’ve received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in the two weeks since the Pfizer vaccine was approved for the age group rose to more than 1,900 Tuesday, but some parents may be hesitant. (File)(WDBJ7)
Updated: May. 25, 2021 at 7:28 PM CDT
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(KWTX) - The number of Central Texas children from 12- to 15-years-of age who have received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine in the two weeks since the Pfizer vaccine was approved for the age group rose to more than 1,900 Tuesday, but some parents may be hesitant.

“I understand the hesitation for many parents because any time you have a new technology available and there’s uncertainty its normal to be skeptical,” said Dr. Gueorgui Dubrocq a pediatric infectious specialist at Baylor Scott & White McLane Children’s.

He advises parents to do research from reliable sources such as healthychildren.org.

He says he thinks as large vaccination sites close, more parents will feel comfortable having their kids vaccinated in their doctors’ offices during routine visits.

“That pediatrician, that family practice doc or the internal medicine provider, when they’re on the fence about whether to get the vaccine or not it’ll be that one provider that you turn to. Getting those answers in real time is very important and I think that will help people’s anxiety about the vaccine,” he says.

State vaccination data Tuesday showed more than 1,900 or about 3.5% of residents 12- to 15-years of age in the 16 Central Texas Counties KWTX is tracking have received one dose of the Pfizer vaccine and 10 are fully vaccinated, suggesting they were part of trials of the vaccine.

Across Central Texas, more than 28% of residents 12 and older and almost 31% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

Statewide just more than 41% of residents 12 and older and more than 44% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated.

In Bell County, more than 1,030 or almost 5% of residents ages 12 to 15 have received a first dose and state data show three are fully vaccinated. More than 25% of the county’s residents who are 12 or older and 27% of the county’s residents who are 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In McLennan County, 576 or about 4% of residents 12 to 15 have received a first dose and state data show five are fully vaccinated. More than 34% of the county’s residents 12 and older and almost 37% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Bosque County, 15 or less than 2% of residents ages 12 to 15 have received a first dose. Almost 35% of the county’s residents 12 and older and almost 37% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Coryell County, 115 or almost 3% of residents ages 12 to 15 have received a first dose. Just more than 20% of the county’s residents 12 and older and almost 22% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Falls County, 18, or about 2% of residents ages 12 to 15 have received a first dose. About 27% of the county’s residents 12 and older and almost 29% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Freestone County, nine or less than 1% of residents ages 12 to 15 have received a first dose. More than 22% of the county’s residents 12 and older and almost 24% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Hamilton County, two residents ages 12 to 15 have received a first dose. More than 37% of the county’s residents 12 and older and more than 39% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Hill County 16 or less than 1% of residents ages 12 to 15 have received a first dose. More than 30% of the county’s residents 12 and older and almost 33% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Lampasas County 31 or almost 3% of residents 12 to 15 have received a first dose. More than 29% of the county’s residents 12 and older and more than 31% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Leon County, 16 or almost 2% of residents 12 to 15 have received a first dose. More than 29% of residents 12 and older and almost 31% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Limestone County, 11, or less than 1% of residents 12 to 15 have received a first dose. More than 25% of residents 12 and older and almost 27% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Milam County, 20 or just more than 1% of residents 12 to 15 have received a first dose. More than 32% of the county’s residents 12 and older and more than 34% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Mills County, 1 resident from 12- to 15-years of age has received a first dose. More than 32% of the county’s residents 12 and older and more than 34% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Navarro County, 30 or about 1% of residents 12 to 15 have received a first dose and state data show one is fully vaccinated. Almost 34% of the county’s residents 12 and older and more than 36% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In Robertson County, 18 or about 2% of residents 12 to 15 have received one dose. More than 32% of the county’s residents 12 and older and more than 34% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

In San Saba County two residents 12 to 15 have received one dose. More than 22% of the county’s residents 12 and older and more 23% of residents 16 and older were fully vaccinated Tuesday.

VACCINE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

COVID-19 INFORMATION, LINKS AND RESOURCES

NEW CASES AND ADDITIONAL DEATHS

The total number of COVID-19 cases confirmed in Central Texas increased by 23 Tuesday to 79,058.

State data showed no additional deaths.

The Central Texas death toll may be as high as 1,684 but according to DSHS data Tuesday, the regional death toll stands at 1,666, including 423 Bell County residents, 11 fewer than the last local count of 434; 34 Bosque County residents; 86 Coryell County residents; 32 Falls County residents; 50 Freestone County residents; 27 Hamilton County residents; 108 Hill County residents; 33 Lampasas County residents; 43 Leon County residents; 79 Limestone County residents; 473 McLennan County residents,14 more than the local count of 459; 48 Milam County residents, one more than the local count of 47; 21 Mills County residents; 143 Navarro County residents, seven fewer than the local count of 150; 43 Robertson County residents, and 23 San Saba County residents.

The statewide death toll rose by 40 Tuesday to 50,198.

DSHS reported another 3,162 confirmed cases of the virus Tuesday, 1,928 of them new, raising the statewide total to 2,511,712.

At least 45,496 cases were active Tuesday, 2,810,642 residents have recovered, and 2,030 patients were hospitalized, 30 fewer than on Monday.

In Trauma Service Area L, which includes Bell, Coryell, Hamilton, Lampasas, Milam, and Mills counties, at least 32 patients diagnosed with COVID-19 were hospitalized Tuesday, accounting for about 4% all hospitalizations and filling almost 3% of available beds.

At least 18 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized Tuesday in Trauma Service Area M, which includes McLennan, Bosque, Falls, Hill and Limestone counties, accounting for about 4% of all hospitalizations and filling about 3% of available beds.

The statewide Lab Test Date positivity rate was 3.39% Tuesday, up from 3.18% Monday.

A positivity rate of 5% or less generally indicates the virus is contained, experts say.

VACCINE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

COVID-19 INFORMATION, LINKS AND RESOURCES

VACCINATIONS

The state is expanding its Mobile Vaccine Program to include groups of five or more residents who choose to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Previously groups of 10 or more were required to take advantage of the service.

“The eligibility expansion for the State Mobile Vaccine Program will allow more Texans to get vaccinated against COVID-19,” Gov. Greg Abbott said Tuesday.

“Vaccines are the most effective defense against this virus,” he said.

“By working together to get more shots in arms, we will continue to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in communities across the state.”

Residents may call 844-90-TEXAS and then select Option 3 to schedule a mobile clinic to vaccinate a group of friends, relatives, employees, and others.

Homebound Texans are still encouraged to call the hotline and select Option 1 to request a state mobile vaccination team to visit their home.

The call center is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

The state earlier halted weekly allocations of COVID-19 vaccine to providers because supply exceeds demand instead is filling vaccine orders as they come in.

A White House initiative should also make it easier to find available vaccines.

Text a zip code to GetVax (438829), or in Spanish to Vacuna (822862), and the response will list three nearby locations with vaccines in stock.

The Texas Public Health Vaccine Scheduler allows residents to sign up for COVID-19 shots through a list of public health departments and select preferred times of day for vaccinations. Those without internet access may call 1-833-832-7067 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week.

VACCINE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

COVID-19 INFORMATION, LINKS AND RESOURCES

BELL COUNTY

The Bell County Health District has paused updates of its local dashboard but says the updates will resume if the county’s incidence rate rises to more than 80 cases per 100,000 residents.

State data, which includes Fort Hood personnel who live on post, showed 22,582 cases Tuesday, but has not been updated since May 14.

The last local update set the virus’ death toll in the county at 434.

State data showed 423 deaths Tuesday.

At least 181 cases were active, and 21,861 residents have recovered, according to DSHS data.

The Bell County Board of Health has named Nikki Morrow, who has worked for the Bell County Health District for nearly 20 years, as the district’s interim director while the search for a permanent replacement for Dr. Amanda Robison-Chadwell continues.

Her last day was Monday.

“I am looking forward to serving the health district as interim and collaborating with our departments and community partners,” Morrow said.

The Belton School Board Monday approved a recommendation to make masks optional inside Belton ISD facilities effective Tuesday in response to Gov. Greg Abbott’s order barring local entities from requiring face coverings.

The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor dashboard Tuesday showed two active cases and a total of 370 since Aug. 1, 2020.

Texas A&M University-Central Texas Tuesday showed no active cases and a total of 43 since March 2020, 31 of them involving students.

The Killeen ISD’s online dashboard Tuesday showed four cases involving students and none involving staff members in the past seven days and 1,802 confirmed cases since March 16, 2020, including 917 involving students and 885 involving staff.

The Killeen ISD continues to offer free COVID-19 screening to students and employees from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on regular school days at the former Nolan Middle School building at 505 Jasper Dr. in Killeen, using the 2nd Street entrance. Screening is by appointment and students younger than 18 require signed waivers from parents or guardians. The state-funded testing uses BinaxNOW nasal swab tests, which provide results in 15 minutes. Information is available online.

The Temple ISD’s online dashboard showed no active cases Tuesday.

The Belton ISD’s online dashboard showed two active cases across two campuses Tuesday.

VACCINE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

BELL COUNTY COVID-19 DEATHS

TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOL COVID-19 DATA

MCLENNAN COUNTY

The Waco-McLennan County Health District showed 27,440 total cases Tuesday, an increase of 16.

At least 113 cases were active Tuesday, 26,868 residents have recovered, and 18 were hospitalized, three of them on ventilators.

Local data showed 459 deaths, an increase of two.

State data showed 473 deaths.

The Central Texas Food Bank will distribute food from 10 a.m. to noon on Thursday at Waco ISD Stadium at 1401 South New Road.

Free COVID-19 test sites are in operation in the Waco area. Additional details are available online. Testing provided by the Waco-McLennan County Health District and the Waco-McLennan County Office of Emergency Management will end Friday. Providers throughout the county including clinics and pharmacies still offer COVID-19 testing. The DSHS test location finder is a resource.

The City of Waco has updated protocols and no longer requires masks to be worn by the public outside on city property or inside city buildings except bus stations and the airport as required by federal law. City employees no longer are required to wear masks except those assigned to the airport of bus station. Occupancy restrictions were lifted Monday at city operated museums and venues. On June 7, city hall and the Development Center will again be open to the public. And on June 15, city council meetings will again be open to the public.

Baylor University’s online dashboard showed six active cases involving students Tuesday. Since Aug. 1, 2020, a total of 3,999 cases have been confirmed. In the past seven days, two tests have come back positive. Baylor is requiring weekly COVID-19 testing of students, faculty, and staff through the summer. The university will not require students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated against the virus this fall but is strongly encouraging everyone to get vaccinated as soon as possible. The university has provided revised guidance for the summer, eliminating capacity limitations on outdoor activities, and making face coverings optional outside. Indoors, any student, faculty member or staff member who is fully vaccinated may meet indoors with fully vaccinated people in groups of 15 or fewer without face coverings or social distancing and may also meet with groups of vaccinated and unvaccinated people in groups of 15 or fewer without face coverings or social distancing.

The McLennan Community College dashboard showed no active cases Tuesday and a cumulative total of 364 cases, 282 involving students.

The Waco ISD dashboard showed no active cases Tuesday and a total of 300 student cases, 301 staff cases and 19 cases involving people classified as “other” since Sept. 8, 2020.

The Midway ISD’s online dashboard Tuesday showed seven cases across three campuses, five of them at the high school.

The Lorena ISD dashboard showed no active cases Tuesday.

The Mart ISD’s online dashboard showed no active cases Tuesday.

The McGregor ISD’s online dashboard showed no active cases Tuesday.

VACCINE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

MCLENNAN COUNTY COVID-19 DEATHS

TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOL COVID-19 DATA

CORYELL COUNTY

Coryell County had 7,026 confirmed and 275 probable cases Tuesday.

At least 7,155 residents have recovered.

The virus has claimed 86 lives in the county, according to state data.

The Copperas Cove ISD’s online dashboard showed one active case Tuesday.

The Gatesville ISD’s online dashboard wasn’t accessible Tuesday.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Tuesday reported two cases involving employees at the Christina Melton Crain Unit; two cases involving employees at the Hilltop Unit; one involving an inmate and five involving employees at the Alfred D. Hughes Unit where one inmate was isolated; one case involving an employee at the Mountain View Unit; one case involving an employee at the Dr. Lane Murray Unit, and one case involving an inmate and one involving an employee at the Linda Woodman State Jail where 57 inmates were restricted and one was isolated.

The Cove House Free Clinic at 806 West Avenue D, Suite H, is offering free COVID-19 testing from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays. Appointments are required and may be made by calling (254) 289-9865.

TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOL COVID-19 DATA

FALLS COUNTY

Falls County had 1,898 confirmed and 200 probable cases Tuesday.

State data showed at least 2,056 residents have recovered.

The virus has claimed the lives of 32 residents, state data showed.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Tuesday reported no cases at the William Hobby Unit in Marlin, and one case involving an employee at the Marlin Transfer Unit.

TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOL COVID-19 DATA

LIMESTONE COUNTY

Limestone County had 2,161 confirmed and 646 probable cases Tuesday.

At least 2,702 patients have recovered.

The virus has claimed the lives of 79 residents, according to state data.

TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOL COVID-19 DATA

NAVARRO COUNTY

Navarro County had 3,471 confirmed and 2,377 probable cases of the virus Tuesday.

Of the total, at least 5,647 patients have recovered.

State data showed 143 deaths in the county.

Local data last updated on March 31 showed 150 deaths.

TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOL COVID-19 DATA

OTHER COUNTIES

Bosque County had 1,377 confirmed and 310 probable cases of the virus Tuesday. Of the total, 1,635 residents have recovered and a 34th has died, according to state data.

Freestone County had 1,122 confirmed and 833 probable cases Tuesday. At least 1,855 residents have recovered and 50 have died according to state data. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Tuesday reported one case involving an inmate and two cases involving employees at the William Boyd Unit in Teague where 57 inmates were restricted, and one was isolated.

Hamilton County had 723 confirmed and 60 probable cases of the virus Tuesday. At least 745 residents have recovered and 27 have died, according to state data.

Hill County Tuesday had 3,804 confirmed cases and 721 probable cases. At least 4,385 patients have recovered, and 108 residents have died, according to state data. The Hill College dashboard showed no active cases Tuesday on the Hill County campus. The Hillsboro ISD dashboard Tuesday showed one case at the junior high.

Lampasas County had 1,857 confirmed and 337 probable cases Tuesday. At least 2,148 residents have recovered, and 33 residents have died, according to state data.

Leon County had 1,280 confirmed and 364 probable cases Tuesday. At least 1,591 patients have recovered, and 43 residents diagnosed with the virus have died, according to state data.

Milam County had 1,460 confirmed and 1,095 probable cases Tuesday. At least 2,538 patients have recovered and 48 have died. Six cases were active Tuesday, and no residents with the virus were hospitalized.

Mills County had 595 confirmed and 63 probable cases of the virus Tuesday. At least 635 patients have recovered and 21 have died, according to state data.

Robertson County had 1,736 confirmed cases Tuesday and 426 probable cases. At least 2,093 patients have recovered, and 43 residents diagnosed with the virus have died, according to state data.

San Saba County had 526 confirmed cases Tuesday and 256 probable cases. At least 758 patients have recovered and 23 have died, according to state data. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Tuesday reported one case involving an inmate and two cases involving employees at the San Saba Transfer Unit where one inmate was isolated.

VACCINE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES

TEXAS PUBLIC SCHOOL COVID-19 DATA

COVID-19 INFORMATION, LINKS AND RESOURCES

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