Thousands of Delaware kids 5 to 11 eligible to get Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine

Santiago Esparza is vaccinated by a nurse

Kidney transplant patient Santiago Esparza, 8, of Alexandrian, Va., is vaccinated by nurse Kelly Vanderwende, Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021, at Children's National Hospital in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

About 77,500 children in Delaware ages 5 to 11 are now eligible to receive Pfizer’s pediatric COVID-19 vaccine at clinics, pediatricians’ offices, and some pharmacies.

The Delaware Division of Public Health announced the state’s plan to vaccinate this age group after Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Dr. Rochelle Walensky endorsed agency advisers’ recommendations to do so.

“This is very exciting news for Delaware in the ongoing fight against COVID,” Dr. Karyl Rattay, the DPH director, said in a statement Wednesday.

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“We have been waiting for the day when we could give our younger school-aged children this very effective layer of protection and let them get back to a more normal childhood. Parents are naturally going to be concerned about rare adverse reactions. What we know is the benefits far outweigh the extremely rare chance of a bad reaction. If my children were in this age group, I would absolutely vaccinate them right away.”

Clinical trials showed that the vaccine is 90.7% protective against developing symptomatic COVID-19. The dose for 5- to 11-year olds is one-third that of adult doses, and side effects were mild. No adverse events like myocarditis were reported.

Parents or guardians in Delaware are encouraged to contact their child’s pediatrician to see if they’re offering the vaccine.

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Vaccines will also be available at some pharmacies, federally qualified health centers, and at the following state-run vaccine sites:

  • Blue Hen Corporate Center: 655 S. Bay R., Dover 19901
  • Georgetown Plaza: 19 Georgetown Plaza, Georgetown 19947
  • Canby Park: 1920 Maryland Ave., Wilmington 19805
  • University Plaza, 256 Chapman Rd., Suite 100, Newark 19702

Written parental consent is required for people younger than 18, but either a parent or other adult may attend with the child.

A complete list of locations is available here.

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