Pfizer Vaccine Approved for 12- to 15-year-olds
Mike Seals - May 18, 2021 10:55 pm
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently expanded the emergency use authorization for the Pfizer vaccine to include adolescents 12 through 15 years of age. The FDA amended the EUA originally issued on Dec. 11, 2020, for administration in individuals 16 years of age and older.
In addition to receiving protection from the effects of the virus, students that have been fully vaccinated will not be required to quarantine if exposed to someone that tests positive for COVID-19.
Appointments may be scheduled now at https://vaccinate.oklahoma.gov/en-US/. Vaccination is free with the Kay County Health Department.
Bintz Pharmacy is also offering the vaccine to this age group. Parents simply need to call 765-9451 to schedule an appointment. This service is also free.
Other Locations Offering Vaccines for Children
A few other local pharmacies and clinics will offer the COVID-19 vaccine to children between the ages of 12-15.
The White Eagle Health Center, 200 White Eagle Drive, will offer the vaccine soon. Appointments may be made by calling 765-2501.
Family Discount Pharmacy, 310 Fairview Avenue in Ponca City, will offer the Pfizer vaccine to children once it is received. Parents should visit https://www.familydiscountpharmacy.com/covid-vaccine/ to schedule an appointment once it becomes available.
Walgreens is also offering the Pfizer vaccine to children. Visit Walgreens.com to schedule an appointment online.
There are no fees associated at any location for the COVID-19 vaccine.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky announced Tuesday that 600,000 children between the ages of 12-15 have received a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine since the FDA granted emergency authorization for that age group last Monday.
As of Tuesday, about 3.5 million adolescents younger than 18 have been vaccinated, according to CDC data.
“Yesterday, we had a landmark day as the president announced more than 60 percent of people, 18 years or older, have received at least one vaccine dose,” said Walensky.
Superintendent Shelley Arrott said, “At this point the COVID-19 vaccination will not be added to the Oklahoma State Department of Health’s school required immunizations. However, it will be a consideration for parents moving forward to make the determination best for their child and family. We will host two opportunities for required vaccination clinics during our July registration/enrollment dates, and COVID-19 vaccinations will be available for those interested. Fully vaccinated students will not be required to close contact quarantine if they have direct exposure to a positive case. We will release detailed information as we get closer to the July registration window. An individual is considered fully vaccinated 14 days after the initial and booster dose of vaccine is administered, so those interested may want to take advantage of vaccine opportunities now for summer activities.”
About the COVID-19 Vaccine
According to the CDC, “Although fewer children have been infected with COVID-19 compared to adults, children can be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, can get sick from COVID-19 and can spread COVID-19 to others. CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccination for everyone 12 years of age and older to help protect against COVID-19.”
Benefits of being vaccinated:
- Provides protection from the potentially long-term, damaging effects of COVID-19, including Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome
- Protects others, especially the elderly and immunocompromised, by reducing the possibility of spreading COVID-19
- Reduces the chances of dangerous variant strains emerging
- Students that have been fully vaccinated will not be required to quarantine if exposed to someone that tests positive for COVID-19
CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, MPH, said, “For vaccination to do its job, we must do our critical part. That means vaccinating as many people as possible who are eligible. This official CDC action opens vaccination to approximately 17 million adolescents in the United States and strengthens our nation’s efforts to protect even more people from the effects of COVID-19. Getting adolescents vaccinated means their faster return to social activities and can provide parents and caregivers peace of mind knowing their family is protected.”