LAS VEGS (KLAS) — The Southern Nevada Health District says it will start offering Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to children beginning Wednesday.
Children aged 6 months to 5 years can start on the Pfizer three-dose vaccine at the agency’s clinics, according to a Sunday news release. The district’s release said the two-dose Moderna vaccine for children is not available. A spokeswoman for the agency said it initially had ordered only the Pfizer vaccine.
The health district’s announcement follows recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices for both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and authorization for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Dr. Fermin Leguen, district health officer for the SNHD, said in the news release the agency is pleased to finally be able to offer the shots “to help protect our youngest residents.”
Leguen added: “The availability of the vaccines for younger children is another critical step in our ongoing efforts to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on our community.”
The three-dose Pfizer vaccine is authorized for children 6 months to 4 years of age. The second dose is administered three weeks after the first, and the third dose is to be given at least eight weeks after the second dose.
The Moderna vaccine, which comes in a series of two doses, is authorized for children ages 6 months to 5 years of age. The second dose should come 28 days after the first.
As of June 13, the health district is reporting 13,868 cases of COVID-19 in children under the age of 4 and three deaths. Many children who get COVID-19 will experience mild symptoms. However, some will experience more severe illness or develop long-term symptoms.
“I would encourage parents and guardians to bring their children in to get vaccinated as soon as possible,” said Dr. Cort Lohff, chief medical officer for the health district. “This is one more step parents can take to help ensure their children have a healthier start to the school year.”.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 591 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in the U.S. since Dec. 14, 2020.
Locations for health district clinics giving the vaccine is at snhd.info/covid-vaccine.