LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Starting today, the Southern Nevada Health District will start offering COVID-19 vaccines for kids 6-months to 5 years old.
These will be Pfizer shots because right now, Moderna is not available for children locally.
The vaccines have recently been cleared for use on very young children.
You likely have questions about getting your child vaccinated against COVID-19.
As the first COVID-19 shots go into the arms of the youngest Americans, many parents have questions about the vaccines.
A pediatrician provided some answers.
“COVID vaccination can help with preventing severe illness, hospitalizations and deaths in this young age group,” said Dr. Sarah Bosslet, director of primary care at Riley’s Children’s Health at Indiana University Health.
A common question: Why get younger children vaccinated for COVID-19 if the illness can be mild for them?
“COVID infection is now the leading infectious cause of death in children under 5. And it doesn’t seem like a big deal until it’s your child who’s really sick,” Bosslet said.
Another common question: If my child already had COVID-19, do they need to get the vaccine?
“They are at risk of getting it again and the vaccine provides even more protection over time,” Bosslet said. “If your child currently has COVID, wait until their symptoms have gone away and then schedule their COVID vaccine.”
Some parents worry younger children may be more vulnerable to side effects of the vaccine, but studies show they are typically mild and can include fever, pain at the injection site, fatigue and irritability. As for whether the youngest kids could suffer the rare side effect of heart inflammation seen in some adolescents and adults, Bosslet said there were no cases reported throughout all the vaccine studies.
And children can get their COVID vaccines, along with their other regularly scheduled vaccines.
If your child is experiencing side effects after the vaccine, you can give them some acetaminophen or ibuprofen, but doctors do not recommend over-the-counter pain relievers before vaccination.