Pfizer agrees to let other companies make its COVID-19 pill

FILE PHOTO: An experimental COVID-19 treatment pill called molnupiravir being developed by Merck & Co Inc and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics LP, is seen in this undated handout photo released by Merck & Co Inc and obtained by Reuters May 17, 2021. Merck & Co Inc/Handout via REUTERS

Almost 1 million children ages 5 to 11 have received their first COVID-19 shot within the first week of eligibility, the Biden administration announced last week.

But the rollout of COVID-19 shots for elementary-age children has exposed another blind spot in the nation’s efforts to address pandemic inequalities: Health systems have released little data on the racial breakdown of youth vaccinations, and community leaders fear that Black and Latino kids are falling behind.

Only a handful of states have made public data on COVID-19 vaccinations by race and age, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not compile racial breakdowns either.

In the few places that do report child COVID-19 vaccines by race, the breakdowns vary.

In Michigan, Connecticut, and Washington, D.C., white children got vaccinated at much higher rates than their Black counterparts. But in New York City, white children between 13 and 17 are vaccinated at lower rates than Black, Latino, and Asian kids.

In Connecticut, vaccination rates for 12- to 17-year-olds in many wealthy, predominantly white towns exceed 80%.

The Biden administration said it is spending nearly $800 million to support organizations that seek to broaden vaccine confidence among communities of color and low-income Americans.

Source: USA Today

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