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The COVID Vaccine for Kids

By the time this article is published in December, there will be more clear guidance on the COVID vaccine in children from ages 5 to 11. The Centres for Disease Control in the States has approved the Pfizer vaccine in children of this age group and Canada will soon follow suit.

Should you vaccinate your child for COVID–19? Here are some considerations to take into account as you make that decision:

 

  1. Although COVID-19 disease is mild in most children, it can have consequences in terms of severe disease and hospitalization.  Though less frequent than in older adults, it is a very real possibility.
  2. The pandemic has had a toll on the mental health and education of children. A vaccine may allow for greater return to normalcy. Younger children benefit most from in-person school and socialization.
  3. The vaccine is safe. There is good safety data on the use of the vaccine in children. The dose administered to children is about a third of that given to adults.  The side effects seem to be on par with those of common childhood vaccines.
  4. Children have a very robust response to the COVID vaccine meaning that they develop good immunity with the vaccine, nearly 91 percent effective.

 

There are many important considerations in deciding whether to vaccinate your child. The approval and rollout of the vaccine are imminent. Use this time to have conversations with trusted sources. Your primary health care provider, your pharmacist or public health officials can help you decide what is best.  Avoid social media posts and look for trusted sources such as the Public Health Agency of Canada or our local Middlesex London Health Unit for reliable information.

 

Dr. Bhooma Bhayana is a family physician in London and the mother of two young men and grandmother of one lovely princess! She continues to find wonder and enjoyment in family practice despite more than 30 years on the job!

 

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