Below are COVID-19 vaccine updates including new tools, news-making headlines, and events.
COVID-19 Updates – August 2, 2021
In This Issue:
The following guidance is as of August 2, 2021. We are working hard to make sure we provide the most accurate information, but please note that the situation is constantly developing so what is shared below is subject to change. Please check www.VaccinateLACounty.com for current information.
Children ages 12 and older became eligible for COVID-19 vaccination on May 10, 2021. Success in vaccinating this cohort will have important implications for the overall effort to vaccinate as many people in the U.S as possible and provide insight into future vaccination efforts when vaccines are approved for those at younger ages. Moreover, ensuring racial equity in COVID-19 vaccinations among children will be important for mitigating disparities in COVID-19 impacts and preventing against further widening of health disparities going forward, particularly as children return to school in the fall.
As of July 26, more than 5.6 million 12-15-year-olds and 3.6 million 16-17-year-olds had received at least one vaccine dose, approximately 37% and 48% of adolescents in each age group, respectively. However, there is virtually no data available on the racial/ethnic composition of children vaccinated. The CDC is not publicly reporting data on the racial/ethnic composition of people vaccinated by age and very few states are reporting these data on their dashboards.
To better understand potential racial/ethnic disparities in COVID-19 vaccination among children, we assessed which states are reporting data on COVID-19 vaccinations for children by race/ethnicity and, where data were available, calculated vaccination rates among children by race/ethnicity.
Read more from the issue brief here.
In last Tuesday’s update on COVID-19 and the delta variant, the CDC recommended that in communities with high COVID-19 transmission rates, everyone, including fully vaccinated individuals, wear a mask in public indoor settings to help prevent spread of Delta and protect others.
Read our updated Tough Q&A on the new guidance.
Based on this new guidance and the latest trends, we also have new messaging guidance to help you answer questions about school reopening guidance, along with a recording of our latest webinar with insights from leaders in public health and education.
Where to Start
The Who: Partnerships between schools, public health officials, and community partners are critical. Teachers and school officials are trusted messengers, so it’s important to equip them with information to answer questions.
Evolving Guidance on Masks in Schools
Policies like mask requirements are made at the local level and state level, where officials take into account local trends and recommendations from institutions such as the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Following last Tuesday’s update from the CDC, we have started to see some local policy updates on school mask requirements.
Even if schools’ policies don’t require masks, many people may decide to wear a mask at school based on their personal risk assessment, preference, or other individual circumstances. It’s important that all students, teachers, families, and staff follow local requirements, while also being supported in any personal decisions about taking additional safety precautions.
Three New Dashboards on the CDC COVID Data Tracker: Vaccine Confidence, Vaccination Status Among Pregnant People, and Vaccination Status Among People with Disabilities
Three new dashboards are now available on the CDC COVID Data Tracker that provide data on vaccine confidence, COVID-19 vaccination status among pregnant people, and COVID-19 vaccination status among people with disabilities.
These new dashboards are described below and can be accessed at https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/ now.
COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence Dashboard
This dashboard uses data from the National Immunization Survey Adult COVID Module (NIS-ACM) to describe vaccination intent and behavioral profiles nationally (each week) and by jurisdiction (each month). The jurisdiction views will contain a subset of the detailed NIS-ACM tables that programs have already received from CDC. For more information about NIS-ACM, see About the National Immunization Surveys | CDC.
COVID-19 Vaccination Coverage Among Pregnant People
CDC will start sharing weekly COVID-19 vaccination coverage estimates for pregnant people based on data from the Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD), a collaboration between CDC’s Immunization Safety Office and nine integrated health care organizations.
Please refer to the following MMWR for more information on methods used to create these estimates: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7024e2.htm.
COVID-19 Vaccination Coverage Among People with Disabilities
CDC will start sharing national COVID-19 vaccination coverage estimates for people with disabilities based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey (HPS). Estimates will be updated every two weeks, and the survey is expected to continue at least until end of October 2021. HPS is a rapid-response survey of adults aged ≥18 years to measure their household experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Data from adults aged ≥18 years are collected in a 20-minute online survey of randomly sampled households stratified by state and the top 15 metropolitan statistical areas; see detailed methods on the Census Bureau website. HPS responses are self-reported. Estimates of vaccination coverage may differ from, and tend to be higher than, vaccination coverage based on vaccine administration data reported at COVID-19 Vaccinations in the United States.
Supporting Childhood Vaccinations – Toolkits and Resources for (IAC, CDC, AAP and others)
The pandemic disrupted routine well-child visits, leading to a decline in routine childhood vaccines. Fall is right around the corner and many children returning to schools, camps, playdates, and daycares are behind on their vaccines. You can help catch children up on their vaccines in your clinic with these valuable resources from IAC, CDC, and others:
IAC – Immunizations Action Coalition
The Repository of Resources gateway page from IAC includes links to international, national, and state-level policies and advocacy materials, including talking points, webinars, press releases, media articles, and social media posts, as well as telehealth resources.
CDC – Centers for Disease Control
NFID – National Foundation for Infectious Diseases
American Academy of Pediatrics
AIM and NPHIC develop “Immunization Communication Resource Portal” featuring talking points, messages, and materials to support communication efforts
The Association of Immunization Managers (AIM) has developed an Immunization Communications Resource Portal and the National Public Health Information Coalition (NPHIC) has developed an Immunization Communications Resource Portal.
Both resource portals share talking points, messages, and other materials to support your jurisdiction’s vaccine-related communications efforts.
The portals aim to increase information sharing and collaboration between public information officers and immunization program managers related to COVID-19, influenza, and routine vaccination.
Short Films on Vaccine Hesitancy – Vaccinate LA
As part of the USC’s project Vaccinate LA, Jeremy Kagan and Annenberg Professor Sheila Murphy worked with young Latinx and African American filmmakers trained at USC School of Cinematic Arts to create two short stories that debunk common myths that underlie vaccine hesitancy in those specific populations.
Of Reasons and Rumors follows a tight-knit Latino family in East LA who disagree about the importance and safety of Covid vaccination.
English version: https://youtu.be/jmt68rZb7fo
Spanish version: https://youtu.be/aq0B68EOSCY
Happy Birthday, Granny revolves around an African-American family in South LA celebrating their grandmother’s birthday when an argument leads to an honest discussion about the truth about the development and safety of the Covid vaccine.
English Version: https://youtu.be/tZ93sR730y8
Time to Heal: COVID-19 Healing Song + Tool Kit from El Sol Educational Neighborhood Center
El Sol Neighborhood Educational Center is excited to share the newly released “Time to Heal” COVID-19 Song and Tool Kit.
This project will guide community health workers and promotores to help promote healing in their communities during this pandemic.
Time to Heal Tool Kit
This healing tool kit is a guide to help self-reflect on mental health and learn how to cope after a traumatic experience, such as living through a pandemic.
Resources such as a weekly mental health check-in plan, a guide for self-care planning, healing plans, an emotional healing map, support group outlines, real stories, song lyrics, and fact sheets related to mental health can be found here on their website.
Funding Opportunity: Promoting Vaccine Confidence in Local Communities through Partnership with Regional Health Offices (DHHS: 125K award ceiling)
Funding Opportunity Number: NV-VSR-21-001
Deadline: August 17, 2021
Community Corps: Rental Assistance is Available to Help Renters and Landlords
From the COVID-19 virus to the economic crisis that followed, communities across the country continue to face enormous challenges.
As advocates, organizers, and leaders, Community Corps members like you are critical to making sure our communities are protected from the virus and have the resources to help navigate financial hardships related to the pandemic.
For renters having trouble paying rent, utilities, or other housing costs – or landlords trying to stay afloat with tenants in this situation – help may be available.
State and local programs are distributing billions of dollars in rental assistance to help renters stay housed during the pandemic.
Visit the CFPB’s Rental Assistance Finder to find out what this means for you or details to pass along to those who may need assistance.
Events, Webinars, Town Halls
Los Angeles County Vaccination News & Updates
Situational Update – As of August 2, 2021
The highly contagious Delta variant continues to drive an increase in cases in Los Angeles County and nationwide. According to the CDC indicators and thresholds for community transmission of COVID-19, there is still high level of transmission in the County.
Vaccination remains the most powerful tool we have for lowering viral transmission. In alignment with the CDC and the state, we are committed to ensuring easy access to vaccines and to building vaccine confidence by answering our community’s questions and providing high-quality information on the science behind the vaccines.
Universal masking is another key strategy for reducing our transmission level. With mounting evidence that the Delta variant is contributing to high rates of infection and can be spread even by fully vaccinated people, both the CDC and the state now recommend masking in all indoor public spaces for everyone regardless of vaccination status, affirming that masking is something we can and should all do to keep each other safe.
Testing and contact tracing are the third critical part of our approach to slowing the spread of infection. Both help us identify the people at greatest risk for spreading the virus to others and give us the opportunity to educate those who test positive about keeping themselves safe and preventing transmission to others.
Everyone has a part to play helping to educate about vaccine safety and importance, wearing the appropriate mask when indoors at workplaces and public places, getting tested if you have symptoms or had an exposure, and participating in public health follow-up if you test positive or are a close contact.
Together, these three strategies comprise a simple but powerful toolkit that we are using to get back to slowing transmission and ending the pandemic.
COVID-19 by the Numbers
|Los Angeles County|
(incl. Long Beach and Pasadena)
As we contemplate the loss of nearly 25,000 LA County residents to COVID-19, we also keep in our thoughts their friends, neighbors, and family members who are experiencing difficult grief. We
As we contemplate the loss of nearly 25,000 LA County residents to COVID-19, we also keep in our thoughts their friends, neighbors, and family members who are experiencing difficult grief. We share in their sorrow and send them our most heartfelt condolences.
Vaccine Update – As of August 2, 2021
The good news is that for the second week in a row, we saw an uptick in first dose recipients after weeks of steadily declining weekly vaccination numbers: between July 19th and 25th, we administered 69,558 doses across the entire County network, an increase of about 7,500 doses from the previous week. This is the second week that we have seen an increase in vaccinations.
The troubling news is that we continue to have large gaps in vaccination between age and racial and ethnic subgroups.
We are thankful that vaccination rates are generally higher in older age groups as older adults are at higher risk of becoming severely ill, especially if unvaccinated. And while we are glad for the gains among younger adults, we will need their vaccination levels to rise higher to reach a level of community immunity.
We are immensely grateful to everyone in this county who has done and continues to do their part by getting vaccinated and encouraging their friends, family members, co-workers, neighbors, and others to get vaccinated.
Over the last few weeks, case rates have risen precipitously among unvaccinated people. While cases are also rising among vaccinated people, this increase is smaller and slower than it is in unvaccinated people.
Our sense of urgency to increase vaccination among our residents remains our utmost priority, and we know it is only possible with everyone’s continued support and hard work.
External News Headlines
(Source: Kaiser Health News)
NBC News: U.S. Passes 35 Million Covid Cases As California Tops 4 Million
The number of U.S. Covid-19 cases has surpassed 35 million as California became the first state to pass 4 million, according to an NBC News tally late Sunday. Almost 616,800 people have died from the disease in the U.S., according to the calculations. With schoolchildren returning to classrooms soon, many of them too young to be vaccinated, the pandemic is revitalizing. The most recent seven-day average of daily new cases, 66,606 for the week that ended Friday, jumped by 64 percent compared to the week before, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported, up from 40,597. (Johnson, 8/2)
The New York Times: A New Surge At A Santa Monica I.C.U.
Los Angeles County is recording more than 2,500 new cases daily, and among the unvaccinated, hospitalizations and deaths are mounting. Even in affluent Santa Monica, where about 80 percent of residents are now vaccinated, dozens of people each day are testing positive for the virus, and hospitals like Saint John’s — a 266-bed facility that typically serves the ordinary needs of the beach communities around it — are being inundated again. (Kosofsky and Hubler, 8/1)
NPR: Caregiving During The Pandemic Takes A Toll On Mental Health
Caregivers in the “Sandwich Generation” have reported a steep decline in mental health, as did others who had to juggle changes in the amount of caregiving they had to provide to loved ones. Caregivers have struggled with anxiety, depression and PTSD at rates much higher than those without caregiving roles. NPR correspondent Rhitu Chatterjee talks about the study and her reporting with Emily Kwong. (Chatterjee, Kwong, Lu and Hanson, 8/2)
The New York Times: Map: Where People In The U.S. Are Most Vulnerable To The Delta Variant
The patchwork nature of the coronavirus vaccination campaign in the United States has left people in many parts of the country still vulnerable to the virus and the fast-spreading Delta variant. Even areas with high vaccine uptake or those that were hit hard in previous waves of the pandemic could see new outbreaks if vaccination rates do not increase, an analysis conducted for The New York Times shows. (Smart, 7/29)
AP: Do I Need To Get Tested For COVID-19 If I’m Vaccinated?
Do I need to get tested for COVID-19 if I’m vaccinated? Yes, if you’ve been around someone who has COVID-19. The latest guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says people who are fully vaccinated should get tested three to five days after a potential exposure, even if they don’t have symptoms. (Perrone, 7/30)