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COVID-19 Vaccine for Children and Teens
CDC recommends vaccination for everyone 12 years and older to help protect against COVID-19.
Why does my child need a COVID-19 vaccine?
COVID-19 vaccines help protect kids from getting COVID-19. Getting a COVID-19 vaccine will also help keep them from getting seriously ill even if they do get COVID-19.
When should my child be vaccinated?
All children who are 12 years and older should get a COVID-19 vaccine. If your child hasn't gotten their vaccine yet, talk to their doctor about getting it as soon as possible.
Are COVID-19 vaccines safe for my child?
Yes. COVID-19 vaccination provides safe and effective protection against the virus that causes COVID-19. COVID-19 vaccines have been used under the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history.
The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine is now available for everyone ages 12 years and older. In the clinical trial for children 12 through 15 years old, no safety concerns were identified with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine.
The clinical trial also showed
that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was 100% effective at preventing COVID-19 with
symptoms in children 12 through 15 years old. In addition, children's immune
systems responded to the vaccine in a way similar to that of older teens and
young adults. To get the most protection, your child will need 2 shots given 3
weeks (21 days) apart.
Before, during and after your child's vaccination
- Tell the doctor or nurse about any allergies your child may have.
- Comfort your child during the appointment.
- To prevent fainting and injuries related to fainting, your child should be seated or lying down during vaccination and for 15 minutes after the vaccine is given.
- After your child's COVID-19 vaccination, you will be asked to stay for 15-30 minutes so your child can be observed.
Can my child get a COVID-19 vaccine during the same visit with other vaccines?
Yes. Your child can get a COVID-19 vaccine and other vaccines at the same visit. Experience with other vaccines has shown that
the way our bodies develop protection after getting vaccinated (immune response) and possible side effects of vaccines are
generally the same when given alone or with other vaccines. Talk with your healthcare provider to learn more.
What are the side effects?
Your child may have some side effects, which are normal signs that their body is building protection. These side effects may affect
your child's ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days. Some people have no side effects. Side effects
from the second shot may be more intense than after the first shot.
Possible side effects after COVID-19 vaccination include:
On the arm where you got the shot:
Throughout the rest of your body:
- Muscle pain
The benefits of COVID-19 vaccination far outweigh any potential risk of side effects. COVID-19 vaccination will help protect your child from getting COVID-19.
Contact your child's healthcare provider:
- If the redness or tenderness where the shot gets worse after 24 hours.
- If the side effects are worrying you or do not seem to be going away after a few days.
Who is paying for COVID-19 vaccines?
The federal government is providing COVID-19 vaccines free of charge to all people living in the United States, regardless of their immigration or health insurance status. COVID-19 vaccination providers cannot:
- Charge you for the vaccine
- Charge you directly for any administration fees, copays, or coinsurance
- Deny vaccination to anyone who does not have health insurance coverage, is underinsured, or is out of network
- Charge an office visit or other fee to the recipient if the only service provided is a COVID-19 vaccination
- Require additional services in order for a person to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
Where can I learn more?
Talk to your child's doctor or nurse to learn more about COVID-19 vaccines and other vaccines that your child may need.
You can also find out more at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.