Close up of band aid, on the arm of a caucasian girl after giving her the vaccine
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Here’s What Parents Are Saying About Getting The Green Light To Vaccinate Their Kids

“Totally teared up learning my child HAS a vaccine appointment.”

by Morgan Brinlee

From excitement and tears of relief to concerned condemnation, news the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended a Covid-19 vaccine for children aged 5 to 11 has spurred strong reactions among parents. But while a number of parents have reported already booking their child’s appointment, recent polls show many remain hesitant despite the vaccine being recommended for children by both the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

The CDC’s recommendation, which follows the Food and Drug Administration’s decision to authorize Pfizer-BioNTech’s Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use in children 5 to 11 years old, has opened the door for pediatricians, pharmacies, and other health care providers to begin administering the vaccine to eligible children. The question remains, however, exactly how many parents will book those appointments?

A Kaiser Family Foundation poll conducted in October found 27% of parents with at least one child between the ages of 5 and 11 were “eager” to get their child vaccinated against Covid-19 “right away.” Another 33% of parents said they would “wait and see” how the vaccine worked before vaccinating their own child while 5% said they would only have their child vaccinated if schools required it. In comparison, 30% of parents surveyed said they would “definitely not” have their 5-to-11-year-old child vaccinated.

In guidance issued Tuesday, the AAP recommended all children 5 years of age and older be given a Covid-19 vaccine unless they are known to have contraindications or allergic reactions to vaccination. The AAP stressed that children who have already had Covid-19 are still recommended to get vaccinated in order to prevent a possible second infection and lower the risk of severe illness and hospitalization due to Covid-19.

For Some Parents, The Excitement Is Palpable

Following the CDC’s recommendation, a number of parents celebrated finally being able to book a vaccination appointment for their child across Twitter.

Or Maybe That’s Just The Feeling Of Sweet Relief?

Other parents reported feeling a wave of relief wash over them once their child’s appointment was confirmed.

Finding A Vaccine Appointment Is Almost All Parents Can Talk About

Whether parents are eager or hesitant to have their child vaccinated against Covid-19, the CDC’s recent recommendation has quickly become a hot topic among parents. In fact, some reported that conversations on “how or where to get your child a vaccine appointment” had dominated recent Halloween get-togethers. Parents can likely expect to hear more tips for appointment scheduling as more and more families have their children vaccinated.

Of Course, Not All Parents Have Plans To Vaccinate Their Child Right Now

Just as Covid vaccines have divided adults, parents have also expressed mixed feelings about vaccinating children. While some have already begun the process of scheduling their child’s vaccination appointment, others have vowed not to vaccinate their child due to concerns about the vaccine’s potential long-term effects.

Those That Do Credited Science

Many of the parents expressed interest in immediately vaccinating their children credited vaccine data, such as the results of Pfizer’s pediatric clinical trial, with helping them make their decision with confidence.

Just In Time For The Holidays

But parents who have decided to schedule their child’s Covid-19 vaccine appointment right away, have noted the timing of the vaccine’s authorization means their child would be protected against the virus in time for holiday gatherings. “She will be protected against getting and giving Covid by Christmas,” one parent tweeted. “What a gift.”