“This age group will be able to spend holidays with friends and family more safely than they have been able to since the start of the pandemic,” said Dr. Jennifer Shu.
We’ve reached a new frontier in the battle against the coronavirus. This week officials finally approved the COVID-19 vaccine for children.
The FDA and CDC have cleared the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for 5- to 11-year-olds.
With the federal government promising enough vaccines to protect the nation’s 28 million kids in this age group, pediatricians’ offices and hospitals began inoculating children. Schools, pharmacies, and other locations plan to follow suit in the days ahead.
Now, parents and guardians may be wondering how to best go about getting their child vaccinated.
There will be several ways for kids to get vaccinated in Florida. First, parents or guardians can set up appointments at either CVS (click here for an appointment), Walgreens (click here for an appointment), or Publix (click here for an appointment).
However, more than 6,000 vaccination clinics are being planned at schools around the country before the winter holiday break, according to The Associated Press. That means kids could have the option of getting vaccinated through their school district.
Orange County Public Schools announced a schedule of walk-up vaccination events. Parents or guardians must accompany children and sign the Department of Health’s consent form.
Seminole County also plans to make the vaccine available at schools as soon as it can order and receive the vaccine. It will announce dates and locations soon.
Palm Beach County schools have also set up COVID-19 vaccine sites for children. Click here for location and hours.
In partnership with the Health Care District of Palm Beach County, the School District of Palm Beach County announced Wednesday vaccination sites for the pediatric Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11. The registration form is available in English and Spanish.
The CDC also advises checking with your child’s healthcare provider about whether they offer COVID-19 vaccination.
Many pediatricians’ offices expected strong interest in the shots at least initially, but health officials are worried about demand tapering off. In addition, almost two-thirds of parents recently polled by the Kaiser Family Foundation said they would wait or not seek out vaccines for their kids.
The vaccine—one-third the dose given to older children and adults and administered with kid-sized needles—requires two doses three weeks apart, plus two more weeks for full protection. That means children who get vaccinated before Thanksgiving will be covered by Christmas.
“The timing before winter holidays is very fortunate,” said Dr. Jennifer Shu, whose Children’s Medical Group office in Decatur, Georgia, began vaccinating first thing Wednesday. “This age group will be able to spend holidays with friends and family more safely than they have been able to since the start of the pandemic.”
The Associated Press contributed to this story.