While You Were Sleeping: Coronavirus updates for May 11

Coronavirus

INDIANAPOLIS — There were several developments in the coronavirus pandemic you may have missed overnight.

Here’s a look:

Pfizer vaccine for 12 to 15-year-olds. The FDA announced the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine has been authorized for emergency use in adolescents 12 to 15 years old.

Previously, only those 16+ were eligible for the vaccine. The company had announced recently they would seek authorization to expand the age range.

Shots could begin as soon as Thursday, after a federal vaccine advisory committee issues recommendations for using the two-dose vaccine in 12- to 15-year-olds. An announcement is expected Wednesday.

Override of governor’s veto. The majority of Indiana’s legislature is siding against Governor Eric Holcomb once again this session. Lawmakers voted to override Holcomb’s veto for the third time in 2021.

This time it was over a law giving local elected leaders oversight on health department orders during public emergencies.

Lawmakers technically had until the end of next session in 2022 to override this veto. However, the Republican majority felt it was important enough to address now. Those opposed wish they could have had more time to come up with a compromise.

Public health order vote. The Indianapolis City-County Council voted Monday evening to keep the current public health orders made by county health director Dr. Virginia Caine in place.

The vote was in response to state lawmakers’ override of the governor’s veto of a bill giving local elected officials power over county or city public health orders issued during emergencies.

More than $4B coming to Indiana. President Joe Biden announced the launch of more than $350 billion in state and local recovery funding from the American Rescue Plan.

The money, part of the administration’s $1.9 trillion recovery package, is intended to support immediate pandemic response, bring back jobs and lay the groundwork for recovery from the pandemic. The money will go to state, local, territorial, and Tribal governments.

Local governments have some flexibility in how they can use the money, according to the administration. The state of Indiana will receive more than $4 billion, which includes an “even distribution” of $500 million given to all states.

Delay in shots for homebound Hoosier seniors. Some homebound Hoosiers are still waiting for their COVID-19 vaccine shot after being “waitlisted” for months.

For Julie Hornback, the wait for a vaccine has been agonizing. 

 “I’m homebound, I’m handicap and use a walker,” Hornback said. “I chose to stay home and I would have been able to get out sooner if I had got vaccinated sooner.”

She was placed on a waitlist in White County back in March.

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