COVID-19 vaccines now available for youngest Pine Belt children
According to the CDC, children aged 6 months to 5 years are able to receive either the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines.
HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - COVID-19 cases are on the rise again in Mississippi, but vaccines for everyone over six months old are now available in every county.
As many kids across the Pine Belt return to school, doctors are reassuring parents of the safety of the COVID vaccination for kids under five years old.
With the recent rise in COVID cases, Pediatrician Dr. Anita Henderson encourages vaccines to prevent infections, but most importantly, to prevent hospitalizations and deaths.
“Kids are going back to school; kids are going back to daycare,” said Henderson. “This is the time when we’re doing a lot of routine checkups, and we as pediatricians are talking to our families about getting their children vaccinated against all preventable diseases, including COVID.”
Last year, the Hattiesburg Clinic participated in the pediatric Moderna vaccine trial, which included 5,000 children nationwide aged six months to five years. Henderson said the vaccine is proven safe and effective.
However, she wants parents to feel confident in their primary care provider and recommends speaking with a pediatrician if they have questions.
“We want parents to feel comfortable that they’re giving their child a safe and effective vaccine,” she said.
Henderson also encourages booster shots for added protection.
“Our patients are actually telling us they’re having very mild side effects,” said Henderson. “They’re even having fewer side effects than routine vaccines, so we are telling parents, and parents are telling other parents that the side effects have been minimal.”
The Pediatric Clinic, Health Works and the Children’s Clinic are a few places around the Hub City where parents can schedule a vaccination time for their child. The vaccine is also available at county health departments.
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