Now that the FDA and CDC have authorized Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines for kids 5-11, many parents are wondering where they need to go to get vaccinations for their children.
The Texas Department of State Health Services said Tuesday afternoon that it plans to post a list of providers, including county health departments and pharmacies, on its website on Wednesday. Additionally, the CDC provides a list of providers, with a map, at vaccines.gov.
Children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian and may be required to bring identification with their name and date of birth, such as birth certificates, medical records, or vaccine records, to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
CVS and Walgreens
National pharmacy chains CVS and Walgreens shared information overnight that they will begin offering the vaccines to kids 5-11 in the coming days. CVS said they plan to have the vaccine at select locations beginning on Sunday while Walgreens planned to begin vaccinations on Saturday.
Local Health Departments
In Dallas County, the public health department said staffers were undergoing training on smaller pediatric doses and new syringes Tuesday and that they would be ready to begin administering vaccines at the main office on Wednesday. The county health department said it received its initial shipment of vaccines and that it expects to receive nearly 7,000 doses this week.
Dr. Philip Huang, director of Dallas County Health and Human Services, said his department will begin limited appointments to administer vaccines to young kids Wednesday, with plans to ramp up soon.
"This is our pathway to getting back to some normalcy," Huang said.
Vaccines Approved for Kids 5-11
The Tarrant County Public Health Department said it received its initial doses of the pediatric Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday, though it didn't say when it would be ready to begin administering to children ages 5-11.
“The more than 204,000, 5 to 11 year-olds in Tarrant County will now be able to receive a COVID-19 vaccine and help reduce the spread across our community,” said Tarrant County Public Health Director Vinny Taneja. “The fastest and easiest way to get a vaccine will be through the family pediatrician or at the local pharmacy. Public Health will offer the vaccine at each of its clinics across the county for those who need it.”
The TCPH also said parents can schedule vaccinations through pharmacies and participating pediatricians (not all pediatricians are able to safely store the vaccine). Tarrant County plans to update its website to include all local health providers that are expected to be giving the vaccine. Those providers can be found at tarrantcounty.com/vaccinefinder.
Denton County Public Health said Wednesday morning their Vaccine Interest Portal Waitlist now allows parents and guardians to register children for COVID-19 vaccination at a DCPH vaccine clinic as early as next week.
“If you are interested in having your children vaccinated, we are now providing the opportunity to set your own schedule for their vaccinations,” said Denton County Judge Andy Eads. “Our focus is in making sure those who want to vaccinate their children have the ability to do so at their convenience.”
Once registered on Denton County's Vaccine Interest Portal Waitlist, parents and guardians will receive an email or text message to self-schedule an appointment for their child on a date and time that is convenient to them. DCPH will have multiple pediatric-only first dose clinics beginning the week of Nov. 7-13 in Denton.
Collin County Public Health said on its website it would update its plan once the pediatric vaccines were approved. As of Tuesday night, that page has not been updated.
Cook Children's Medical Center also received a shipment of the vaccine Tuesday. The hospital said it has enough doses to vaccinate about 3,000 children and that it plans to soon announce details of a mass vaccination clinic to be held with Cook patients and those with existing MyCookChildren's accounts. Those families will be contacted directly and there is no need for families to call to schedule appointments with Cook Children's. All scheduling will occur through their MyCookChildren’s account and details, including the schedule for the vaccination clinics, will be posted on CookChildrens.org.
Children's Health in Dallas said on their website they will offer COVID‑19 vaccines to patients being seen in their clinics and hospital locations but didn't announce plans for a mass vaccination event.
Viles with orange caps designate pediatric doses. Pfizer doses will be given to children using a smaller needle and will have one-third the amount of medicine as adult doses, which come in vials with a purple cap.
Children ages 5-11 will require two doses administered three weeks apart, meaning children vaccinated by Veterans Day would be fully vaccinated by Christmas Eve.
A nationwide list of vaccine providers can be found at vaccines.gov.