Just one day after the CDC okayed the use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for young people ages 12 to 15, among the very first in that age group to receive the vaccine in Dallas County was Madeleine Jenkins, the teenage daughter of Judge Clay Jenkins.
“Madeleine wants to help people know that it is safe to get vaccinated,” Jenkins said Thursday during a news conference at Parkland Hospital, minutes after his daughter received her first dose of the vaccine.
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“I wanted to get vaccinated so I could see my friends and help protect my grandparents,” Madeleine Jenkins, 15, said when asked why this was important to her.
“[This past year] hasn’t been very fun. I’ve missed my friends a lot,” Madeleine Jenkins said about life during the pandemic. “I definitely have missed being with my friends and going to school.”
Judge Jenkins said the county will begin its efforts to vaccinate young people in earnest starting on Friday at several sites throughout Dallas County – Fair Park, the Ellis Davis Fieldhouse, the Eastfield campus of Dallas College, and at Parkland Hospital.
Children who are preparing to be vaccinated will need a parent or guardian to be present with them during the process.
“When we heard about it, we got up this morning and rushed right on out here," said Iris Sanders, who brought her 12-year old Willie Jones to get vaccinated. “I think all parents should come out and get their kids the shots because it is going to save their life in the long run," she continued.
Sanders was among a string of parents who brought their kids to the Ellis Davis Field House location to receive their first dose of the vaccine.
Within the last week, 21% of people who sought medical treatment for symptoms related to COVID-19 in Dallas County were kids between the ages of 1 and 17, according to Judge Jenkins.