Be a Hero! Get a Covid vaccine for your little superhero!
The CDC has approved the COVID-19 vaccine made by Pfizer-BioNTech for children ages 5 through 11. This approval offers a chance to greatly reduce the risk to children and to help them more safely do the things they need and want to, like going to in-person school, having playdates, attending birthday parties, having sleepovers, visiting relatives, and going to summer camp.
Is it really important to get children vaccinated for COVID-19?
Early in the pandemic, it was thought that children did not get COVID. Now, we know that is not true. While the risk for children is not as great as that for adults, the Delta variant is especially contagious. And the risk to children from COVID is higher than from other diseases that children are routinely vaccinated against.
Nationwide, thousands of children have been hospitalized with COVID-19. Hundreds have died.
The Delta variant is especially unpredictable. It is affecting healthy children and adults, not just older and sicker people. And other variants may emerge in the future.
Is the vaccine really effective in children?
The clinical trials have shown that the Pfizer vaccine is more than 90 percent effective in reducing the risk of children getting COVID-related symptoms.
Is the vaccine safe for children?
In the clinical trials, the vaccine has been shown to be very safe for children. The side effects were soreness in the arm, tiredness, headache, and fever. These lasted for 1 to 2 days and then disappeared, in almost all cases. No serious side effects were seen.
Was this vaccine approved too quickly?
The FDA and the CDC held this vaccine to the same standards that they hold the other vaccines we give our children, like those for measles, tetanus, or diphtheria.
Do children receive the same vaccine as adults?
The vaccine formula is the same, but the dosage is different. Because children have smaller bodies, they receive a smaller dose, and the needle is smaller.
Where can I get the vaccine for my child?
The vaccines for children are currently available nationwide. Check with your pediatrician, family doctor, or other healthcare provider.
In addition, many pharmacies are also offering the vaccine. To find one near you, visit http://vaccines.gov.
Do you think I should get my child vaccinated against COVID?
As a science-based educational organization, we in Extension trust the research on the safety of the vaccine and the potential it offers to protect our children, our families, and our communities. But we never offer individual medical advice.
If you have questions about the vaccine, talk to your pediatrician, family doctor, or other healthcare provider to get the facts you need about what is right for your family.
Getting a COVID-19 vaccine might not give your little superhero real super-powers, but it will help to protect them and others, too. And that’s pretty super!
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