BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this weekend approved the COVID-19 vaccine for children six months to five years old.
A milestone that took more than a year-and-a-half in the making. However, some families are still cautious about the effects the newly approved vaccine will have on young children.
On Saturday, vaccine advisers for the CDC voted unanimously to approve the two-dose Moderna and three-dose Pfizer vaccines for children between six months and five years old.
“This means that the whole family essentially can be vaccinated that means protection against the short-term and long-term consequences of COVID,” Dr. Mark Ghaly the secretary of California Health and Human Services said.
Local doctors said this is a huge step forward for everyone.
“I absolutely think it is a milestone that should be celebrated,” Dr. Nimisha Amin a pediatrician at Southwest Pediatrics said. “There are so many parents out there that have been waiting, and waiting, and waiting for this vaccination to be approved for our youngest cohort of children.”
For now, students are not required to have the vaccination to attend school. Things could change once full FDA approval is given, but there’s time.
This COVID-19 Vaccine requirement would not be required anytime before July 1, 2023.
As for local families, I asked what they thought about the new COVID-19 approval.
“I don’t think there is a reason to worry,” Martha Ybarra a great-grandmother of two said. “Well, I feel like it’s just like a vaccination like the other shots you have to take.”
“The shots may be causing long-term harm,” Richard Hughes a great grandfather of five said. “I’ve had my shots, I’m 85. My long term is short term and that doesn’t bother me. If you have a child, they don’t know what’s going to happen in the long run.”
To clear up rumors and false information Dr. Amin says there’s no reason to worry.
“We now have millions of children who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 starting in April of 2021 and they are not dying because of the vaccine,” Amin said. “They are not having long-term side effects because of the vaccine. They are not becoming infertile because of the vaccine. The vaccine is protecting them against severe illness against COVID-19 and quite honestly that’s it.”
The California Health and Human Services Department is encouraging all families to reach out to their local physicians and clinics to get not only your youngest vaccinated but the entire family.