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Kansas Adopts FDA, CDC Guidelines for Pfizer Vaccine for Children Ages 5-11
Park Elementary listed as a COVID-19 cluster
covid-19 symptom graphic
This chart compares various seasonal ailments and breaks down their symptoms.

TOPEKA – Governor Laura Kelly this week announced that Kansas will adopt the Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control’s recommendations for administering the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to children ages 5-11 under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), making all Kansans 5 and older eligible for the COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine.

“With this new development, the tools we need to keep kids safe and in school – and finally return to normal – are more accessible than ever,” Governor Kelly said. “We’ve been preparing for this announcement for months – and we stand ready to distribute this vaccine quickly and efficiently to every Kansas community. The vaccine is safe, effective, and free – and I encourage all Kansas parents to get their kids aged 5 and older vaccinated as soon as possible.”

Local cluster locations

Park Elementary School in Great Bend and Leisure Homestead Association in Stafford were listed as COVID-19 exposure locations this week by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

KDHE reports there are 51 active school clusters but only five locations were listed. Every Wednesday, KDHE publishes the locations that have five or more COVID-19 cases with symptom onset in the last 14 days. Park School has had nine, with Oct. 30 as the last onset date. The long-term care facility in Stafford has had five, with Oct. 27 as the last onset date.

Great Bend USD updated its weekly COVID case tracking report Wednesday afternoon. There are 27 active positive cases in district buildings, with 156 resolved cases for the semester. There were no new deaths reported in Barton County or its surrounding counties.

Here are the active and resolved case counts, by building:

• GBHS 4 - 40

• GBMS 3 - 25

• Eisenhower 2 - 35

• Little Panthers Preschool 0 - 3

• Jefferson 0 - 19

• Lincoln 0 - 18

• Park 5 - 5

• Riley 9 - 7

• District Education Center 0 - 1

• Helping Hands 2 - 0

• Special Services 0 - 3

Wednesday update

As of 9 a.m. Wednesday, Kansas has had 438,196 COVID-19 cases over the course of the pandemic, resulting in 15,009 hospitalizations and 6,448 deaths statewide. There were 2,263 new cases, 110 new hospitalizations and 26 new deaths reported since Monday, Nov. 1.

Here are the total cases for area counties as of 9 a.m. Wednesday, with the change since Monday, Nov. 1:

• Barton 3,974 (+29)

• Ellsworth 1,410 (+7)

• Pawnee 1,504 (+7)

• Rice 1,481 (+4)

• Rush 519 (+4)

• Russell 1,180 (+18)

• Stafford 613 (+3)

There were no new hospitalizations related to COVID-19 reported Wednesday in Barton, Pawnee or Stafford counties.

More about vaccines for children

The Pfizer vaccine dose approved for ages 5-11 was designed for children, and underwent additional clinical trials specifically for that age group to determine that the vaccine was safe, effective, and appropriately dosed to minimize any possible side effects, KDHE reports.

The Pfizer vaccine formulation has already been administered more than 380 million times in the United States since it was first authorized in December 2020 and continues to prove effective while undergoing intensive safety monitoring.

KDHE Secretary Lee Norman, M.D., urged parents to talk to their family physicians about the vaccine.

“While we have seen lower rates of COVID infections in children as compared to adults, the Delta variant brought the levels of infections in kids to record highs,” Dr. Norman said. “This important development will help keep children safe and stop the spread of COVID-19.

“These vaccines have been proven to prevent COVID-19 infection, severe illness, hospitalization, and death, and are important to get even if your child has already had COVID. But don’t just take my word for it – talk to your local doctor, get all the facts, and make the best choice to protect your family. Vaccination is the key to beating this pandemic.”

All 5 to 11-year-old children can now receive their Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from a large network of vaccine providers across Kansas, including doctor’s offices, retail pharmacies, local health departments and clinics.

In addition, many community partners and schools may also offer the COVID-19 vaccine for Kansas children. Information on locations offering vaccines for children ages 5 to 11 will be available at, and KDHE recommends calling your local provider to confirm availability as well.

Children under the age of 5 are not yet eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. The CDC and FDA will continue to monitor the safety and efficacy data of vaccines and consider expanding eligibility for vaccines at appropriate doses for children under the age of 5, pending further review. Additionally, the FDA and CDC have not yet provided approval or guidance on Moderna’s vaccine for children aged 5-11.

Refer back to KDHE’s website for up-to-date information as guidance on vaccines for children continues to evolve at