Watauga High School Clinic.JPG

Watauga High School student Finley Hodges receives a vaccine from head nurse Shelly Klutz. Also pictured is Riley Alderson. 

BOONE — Watauga High School administered 61 COVID-19 vaccines to students and 37 to parents and staff at a COVID-19 vaccine clinic April 21.

The high school partnered with AppHealthCare and Boone Drug to administer the two-shot Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, which is the only COVID-19 currently approved for those 16 and older. Volunteers with Samaritan’s Purse also helped coordinate the clinic.

“It was wonderful to see both students and parents coming to the clinic today,” said Watauga County Schools Superintendent Scott Elliott. “After over a year of so many things feeling out of our control, getting the vaccine and protecting our families is something we can control and something we can do to protect ourselves. My hope is that more parents and students age 16 and older will get the shot.”

Garrett Price, a spokesperson for WCS, said based on a survey the school system conducted, 125 students reported that they were already vaccinated prior to the April 21 clinic. Price said those numbers could be higher than what was reported. There are around 975 students in WCS that are 16 and older.

Elliott previously said that he hopes to potentially host vaccine clinics for younger students when more vaccines are approved for those younger than 16.

The companies that created the Pfizer vaccine — Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE — stated on March 31 that it in a Phase 3 trial in adolescents 12 to 15 years of age with or without prior evidence of COVID-19. The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine BNT162b2 “demonstrated 100 percent efficacy and robust antibody responses, exceeding those recorded earlier in vaccinated participants aged 16 to 25 years old, and was well tolerated.”

According to the companies, the trial enrolled 2,260 adolescents 12 to 15 years of age in the United States. Of those in the trial, 18 cases of COVID-19 were observed in the placebo group — which had 1,129 people — versus none in the vaccinated group, which had 1,131 people.

The companies stated they planned to request the Food and Drug Administration amend its emergency use authorization for the vaccine to include that it can be administered to those 12 years old and older.

“It takes our entire community working together in this way to help keep our children safe and help keep our schools open,” Elliott said.

The high school planned to host another COVID-19 vaccine clinic on April 27 during the school day.

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