COVID-19: Boosting Hope

From keiki to kūpuna, it is our kuleana to stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect our most vulnerable community members. Our statewide hospitalizations have decreased, but to ensure that everyone who needs care has access, we all must continue to talk to loved ones about what we know works. The best way to protect vulnerable communities in Hawai‘i is to get vaccinated. Download our infographic Protect Your ‘Ohana, Get Vaccinated (attached below) to share with your loved ones about the benefits of getting vaccinated. We are hopeful as communities continue to follow safe practices coupled with an increase in vaccination rates. Hawai‘i is about 22,000 doses away from 2 million doses administered in the state!

 

What are the most current updates around vaccination?

An Israeli study based on real-world evidence shows that vaccination provides protection to unvaccinated individuals in the community, in addition to the person who is vaccinated. Pfizer has been shown to be safe and highly effective in keiki 5 to 11 years of age; as we wait for it to be authorized and available, we can protect children in our communities by getting vaccinated.

The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) provided recommendations on Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster doses. The Hawai‘i Department of Health (DOH) will follow CDC guidance on boostersand will prioritize:

  • Kūpuna age 65 and older and individuals aged 50-64 with underlying medical conditions.

As supply allows, providers should consider booster doses for additional populations:

  • Individuals age 18-49 with underlying medical conditions, based on individual benefits and risks.
  • Individuals age 18-64 and at high risk for occupational or institutional exposure, based on individual benefits and risks.

Those with questions about eligibility should contact their healthcare provider. These recommendations apply only to those who received the Pfizer vaccine and we are awaiting more information for those who received Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

Find a vaccination site:

During these times, we could all use a touch of hope. The Inter-Agency Standing Committee provides a free downloadable storybook for keiki, “My Hero is You 2021: How kids can hope with COVID-19!”; available in over 143 languages. The story teaches keiki how the pandemic has affected everyone differently, but that there is still hope during challenging times. We have the power to be a hero in our community; it starts with getting vaccinated, wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet from others, avoiding crowds, and washing our hands often.

Mahalo for doing your part,

The HIPHI team