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Pediatrician speaks on COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11

'The benefits outweigh any risks,' pediatrician says
New Bill Would Let Kids Get Vaccinated Without Their Parents’ Consent
Posted at 10:56 PM, Nov 02, 2021

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Centers for Disease Control Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky signed off on the lower-dose COVID vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 Tuesday night.

Dr. Mona Amin, a board-certified pediatrician with Pediatric Associates said this decision is huge.

"Some of the information that came out of the meeting today showed that COVID-19 is a preventable illness," Dr. Amin said. "So, similar to things like polio, measles, all the things that we do vaccinate our children for," she said.

Dr. Amin said it appears the vaccines will soon be available through a child's physician's office and pharmacies.

"We are doing our part by vaccinating ourselves and we are doing our part by vaccinating our children," she said. "Whether they are low risk or not, this is a beneficial vaccine. Meaning, the benefits outweigh any risks."

It's a decision that will be left to parents. Some said they will not be ready to have younger children vaccinated.

"I think we would rather focus on building their immune system rather than giving them just vaccines that we don't really truly know what's the consequences," Salah Sarir, a parent, said.

Scott Witkowski, another parent, said he can't support the vaccine.

"I think with the younger age groups seeing less hardship from what comes from the disease. I think it's a little early on. You typically see this taking longer with the approvals," he said.

RELATED: How school districts will be involved in COVID-19 vaccine distribution for children ages 5 to 11

A number of school districts in the area are also planning on what could happen next.

The School District of Palm Beach County is working with the health care district to set up mobile vaccine units at schools once again. Details will be announced once the vaccine is in hand and plans are finalized.

Martin County schoolleaders said Florida Community Health Center has reached out to them about using school parking lots for vaccine distribution. No timeline is set, but the school board would need to approve the plan.

St. Lucie Public Schoolssaid it is also working with Florida Community Health and expects to have more information for parents in the next few days.

The Okeechobee County School District said they continue to work closely with the department of health and that they will determine if there is a need for a drive similar to the drives held at the high school and middle school levels.

The School District of Indian River County currently does not have plans for vaccine availability on campus.