YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – With Covid-19 vaccines now available to younger children, health care experts across Ohio were putting on a full-court press Wednesday to urge parents to make appointments for their kids.
“We’re really trying to make sure we have options available, even urgent care. Akron Children’s Urgent Care sites will be carrying the vaccine,” said Dr. Michael Bigham with Akron Children’s Hospital.
Mercy Health will be offering the vaccine as well as a number of pharmacies in the region.
For now, only the Pfizer vaccine will be available for children between the ages of 5 and 12, with a third of the regular adult dosage being administered. Just like adults, the vaccine will be a two-dose series given 21 days apart.
Although experts admit Covid has not had the impact on children that it has had on other age groups, it is still a serious concern.
“As of November 1, more than 2,000 Ohio children under 18 have been hospitalized from COVID-19 and 15 have died,” said Dr. Bruce Vanderfhoff, Ohio Department of Health’s chief medical officer.
With many parents fearful of possible side effects, experts insist the risks of children coming down with Covid and developing long-lasting health problems are much worse.
“If you are worried as a parent about long-term side effects, you should be concerned about the risks of COVID. Even mild COVID in a child has the risk of long-term side effects,” said Dr. Patty Manning, a physician with Cincinnati Child care.
The doctors stress the ability to vaccinate younger children will take us closer to reaching herd immunity.
“Now, we can take 5 to 11-year-olds, and once they are vaccinated, they become part of that bubble of immunity and common health is elevated,” said Dr. Michael Forbes, a physician with Akron Children’s Hospital.
As of this report, entities informing WKBN 27 First News that they will be offering the childhood COVID vaccine include: (Appointments may be necessary for some locations)
- Akron Children’s Hospital – akronchildrens.org/covidvaccine
- Mercy Health – Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at their Wick Primary Care on the YSU campus
- Youngstown City Health District – Children over the age of five can receive free COVID-19 vaccinations at upcoming clinics. The Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County (PLYMC) and the Youngstown City Health District will be giving COVID-19 vaccines for ages 5+, booster shots for those eligible and annual flu shots at the following clinics: Tuesday, November 9, from 11:30 a.m. to 6:15 p.m. at the Main Library, 305 Wick Ave.; Tuesday, November 23 from 11:30 a.m. to 6:15 p.m. at the Newport Library, 3730 Market St. In addition, YCHD will be giving the Pfizer vaccine for children ages 5-11 on Thursday, Nov. 4 at the Rodelf Sholom Temple on Elm Street from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and then on Friday, Nov. 12, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Eugenia Atkinson Rec Center, 903 Otis St, Youngstown.
- Walk-ins for COVID-19 vaccinations and flu shots are welcomed, but appointments for a COVID-19 booster shot are recommended and can be made by visiting the Youngstown City Health District website: https://covid19.youngstownohio.gov/
- CVS (Niles, Canfield and Struthers locations)
- Trumbull County Combined Health District – Trumbull County Combined Health District (TCCHD) will be hosting a COVID-19 Pfizer pediatric vaccination clinic on Tuesday, November 9, 2021, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at the Eastwood Mall in the former Lane Bryant location. Only children 5 years of age through 18 years of age will be eligible. If your child is getting vaccinated at this clinic a parent or guardian must be with them. A $100 VISA Gift Card will be given to those children who receive their first dose of the Pfizer at our vaccine clinic while supplies last. To speed up your check-in process we are strongly encouraging everyone to visit our website (www.tcchd.org) to download, print, and complete the COVID-19 Vaccine Administration Record form and bring the completed form with you
- Mahoning County Public Health – There are limited appointments for COVID pediatric vaccinations on Nov. 15, Nov. 18, Nov. 29 and Dec. 1 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m Parent(s)/legal guardian(s) can schedule their children by calling the Mahoning County Public Health Nursing division at 330-270-2855, option 3
Other providers and locations can be found on the Ohio Department of Health website.