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What Parents Need to Know about Kids and the COVID-19 Vaccine

 

​​On Thursday, May 13, 2021, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a recommendation that everyone 12 years and older receive a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible to protect against the virus.

Previously, vaccines were only FDA-authorized for people 16 and older. We do not currently have trial data for children 11 and younger, though trials are being conducted.

Boys Town Pediatrics will be offering the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to patients ages 12 and older. Call 531-355-6540 to schedule a vaccine for your child.

What vaccine(s) are approved for children?

  • Ages 12 – 17
    • Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Ages 18 and older
    • Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine
    • Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine
    • Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine

Vaccines are not yet authorized for children 11 and younger.

Is the vaccine safe and effective?

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine underwent some of the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history. A Pfizer-BioNTech clinical trial for children ages 12 to 15 showed that children's immune systems responded similarly to those of older teens and young adults and that the vaccine was 100% effective at preventing COVID-19 with symptoms.

What makes the vaccine so effective is that it produces a piece of the virus called a spike protein. While not an active virus, this structure mimics COVID-19 and teaches the body how to react should it recognize an active COVID-19 spike protein in the future.

There is some information circulating about specific safety concerns. Parents should know that this vaccine:

  • Does not contain a live virus
  • Does not change a patient's DNA
  • Does not affect fertility

What should I expect when my child gets the vaccine?

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is a two-shot series. The second shot will be given three weeks after the first.

Clinical trials have shown that some recipients have side effects as a result of the vaccine. This is a normal reaction to the body building protection, and the benefits of receiving the vaccine outweigh the risk of any potential side effects.

The CDC provides this simple infographic for explaining potential side effects. Remember, not everyone will have these effects. If your child has no side effects, that does not mean the vaccine isn't working.

CDC Infographic  

The vaccine is free to all people living in the U.S., regardless of immigration or health insurance status. This means you should not pay at all – no copays, no administration fees, no office visit fee, nothing. (The only exception is if you receive the vaccine from your doctor and receive other services at the same visit. Then you can be charged for those other services, but not for the COVID-19 vaccine.)

Is Boys Town Pediatrics offering the vaccine?

Boys Town Pediatrics will be offering the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to patients ages 12 and older. Call 531-355-6540 to schedule a vaccine for your child.

Eligible patients (12 years and older) can also receive a vaccine at:

View CDC Information Sheet

View the Pfizer Fact Sheet


COVID-19