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Nye County unable to vaccinate 16 and 17 year olds

On Monday, April 5, the state of Nevada opened up eligibility to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, allowing anyone who is 16 years or older to schedule an appointment. However, in Nye County, those aged 16 and 17 will need to review their options with pharmacies and their personal doctors, as Nye County’s PODs, or points of dispensing, are not able to administer the vaccine to those age groups.

Nye County Public Information Officer Arnold Knightly issued this clarification on April 5, telling members of the media and public in his regular emails regarding the current COVID-19 situation in Nye County, “The county is using the Moderna vaccine, which can only be given to people 18 years and older.”

As it stands today, there are three COVID-19 vaccines available for public use. These include the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, both of which require two doses, as well as the most recently approved vaccine from Janssens, or Johnson and Johnson, which requires just one dose. Of the three, only the Pfizer vaccine has received approval from the Federal Drug Administration for use in 16- and 17-year-olds.

Knightly further explained for the Pahrump Valley Times that the county is unable to use the Pfizer vaccine because it simply does not have the proper storage necessary for it, as the Pfizer vaccine requires colder storage temperatures than either the Moderna or Janssens vaccines.

Knightly recommended that parents of 16- and 17-year-olds check with a health care provider or pharmacies to find a location that can provide the Pfizer vaccine. Assistance with finding an appropriate vaccine appointment can also be received by calling the state’s vaccine helpline at 800-401-0946. The helpline is available seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Contact reporter Robin Hebrock at rhebrock@pvtimes.com

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