Teen vaccine trial begins in Jacksonville

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The Novavax COVID-19 vaccine trial for 12 to 17-year-olds started in Jacksonville.

Novavax is looking for 3,000 total participants across 75 different sites in the country for its protein-based vaccine.

Geraldine and David Tait went through the adult trial and their two kids, Juliette and Alexis, started the teen trial. ”The next step is to get the kids onboard. They’re a factor. They’re the ones bringing it home to the grandparents,” Geraldine said.

The vaccine include two different doses, separated by 21 days.

The shot is different from the mRNA vaccines like Pfizer and Moderna.

Novavax does not need to be refrigerated in extreme cold.

Doctors said the vaccine is more traditional and could be the solution for people who are on the fence about getting a COVID-19 shot.

”I was more worried about getting the virus and what the effects of that were than getting the vaccine,” David said.

A third of the participants will get a saline shot, but Encore Research Group said by the end of the trial, everyone will get the vaccine.

In Duval County, nearly 5% of the vaccinated population is 16 to 24-years-old according to data from the Department of Health. Public health officials said adolescents could be the key to obtaining herd immunity.

It could also make major changes to summer programs and back to school for the 2021-22 school year. Duval County Public Schools released a survey Thursday for students and parents to answer questions about masks, cleaning, and social distancing in the next school year.

You can take the survey here: https://dcps.duvalschools.org/Page/30155.