Pediatric COVID-19 Vaccine
Getting your child the pediatric COVID vaccine may be one of the most important steps you can take to keep your child safe from contracting coronavirus.
Most young children and all teenagers can now receive the COVID-19 vaccine. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends everyone ages 6 months and older get this important vaccine to protect themselves and others from COVID-19 and its complications.
Who Can Get a Vaccine?
During the COVID Pandemic, Parker Pediatrics was pleased to be a provider of the COVID-19 Vaccines to our patients, their families, and other community members. Since the Pandemic Protocols and Provisions ended in May, we are now only administering the current COVID vaccine exclusively to our patients. Call the office to check availability and schedule into a existing appointment or nurse clinic.
Pediatric COVID-19 Vaccine Information
- Ages 6 Months to 4 Years: Pfizer 2023-2024
- Ages 5 to 11: Pfizer 2023-2024
- Ages 12 and Up: Pfizer 2023-2024
- Ages 6 months to 4 years: Must be at least 6 months to 4 years of age on date of vaccine.
- If previous COVID vaccines have been received, then only one dose is required.
- For those children in this age group who have not received any other COVID vaccine, three doses are required.
- Second Dose: 21 days (3 weeks) after first dose.
- Third Dose: 8 weeks after second dose.
- For all other age groups, only one dose is required regardless of previous vaccine status.
- If a COVID vaccine was recently received, it must be at least eight weeks from this dose to receive the 2023-2024 vaccine.
Can Children Get Covid?
Children are as likely as adults to become infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, and like adults, children and teens who have had COVID-19 can also get very sick and develop serious complications from the disease. This is especially true for children with underlying health conditions, such as cancer or diabetes. Multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C) is a condition in which different parts of a child’s body become inflamed. MIS-C can cause inflammation of a child’s heart, lungs, brain, kidneys, eyes, skin, or gastrointestinal organs. Doctors have reported more than 2,300 cases of MIS-C in children ages 5 to 11 years old since the beginning of the pandemic.
Child Covid Statistics
There are approximately 28 million children between the ages of 5 and 11 living in the United States; unfortunately, there have been about 2 million cases of COVID-19 in this age group since the pandemic began in early 2020. As of mid-October 2021, there have been more than 8,300 hospitalizations of children in this age group for COVID. Nearly 100 children ages 5 to 11 have died from the disease, making COVID-19 one of the top ten causes of death in this age group.
COVID-19 Vaccine Dosage for Children and Teens
Unlike many other medications, the dosage of the COVID-19 vaccine dosage does not change according to a child’s weight, but instead varies by their age on the day they receive vaccination. Children who are 6 months to 4 years old, and 5 to 11 years old, receive an age-appropriate dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, while adolescents ages 12 years and older receive the same dose of that vaccine as do adults. Depending on age, a child may need additional doses of the vaccine to complete the series (see dosing guidelines above).
Reasons for Vaccination
Kids can also spread the virus to others, both at home and at school. Vaccinating your children can help protect other members of your family or classmates.
Perhaps the best part is that vaccinated children and teens can resume the normal activities they enjoyed prior to the pandemic. This means your child can safely go to school, participate in sports, playdates, and many other group activities.
Possible Side Effects of COVID-19 Vaccine in Child or Teen
Side effects are possible with all medications, including the pediatric COVID vaccine; severe reactions are rare. The side effects associated with this vaccination are normal signs that the body is building protection against the virus; side effects usually go away in a few days. Side effects of COVID-19 vaccination typically include soreness, redness and swelling in the area of the arm where the child got vaccinated. Other side effects may include:
- Muscle pain
Inflammation of the heart muscle, known as myocarditis, and pericarditis that involves inflammation of the outer lining of the heart, have been reported in children ages 12 to 17 years who have received the COVID-19 vaccination. These reactions are rare.
How Parker Pediatrics Can Help
For more information on the pediatric COVID-19 vaccine, consult with your child’s doctor. Tell your pediatrician about any medication allergies your child may have.
In addition to the COVID-19 vaccination, Parker Pediatrics provides another way to keep your child healthy during this time with well-child appointments. Read more on Well-Child visits during COVID-19 here.