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Pfizer doses available for children ages 5 to 11

MDS administers vaccines to 12 to 15 year olds

Logan McKeown, 13, receives the Pfizer COVID vaccine from Staff Sgt. Tyler Watkins, 66th Medical Squadron NCO in charge of Immunizations, at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., May 19. The clinic is now offering the Pfizer vaccine to children ages 5 to 11, following its emergency use authorization for pediatric patients by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration last month. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Maki)

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – The 66th Medical Squadron is now offering the Pfizer COVID vaccine to children ages 5 to 11, following its emergency use authorization for pediatric patients by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration last month.

At this time, the Pfizer vaccine is the only option available for children under 12.

Due to a limited supply of pediatric vaccine doses, only patients who are TRICARE beneficiaries are currently eligible to receive the vaccine here.

“The pediatric vaccines include the same formula and levels of protection as those we would administer to adults, but the dosage is smaller,” said Lt. Col. Ryan Gough, 66 MDS public health emergency officer.

He said the pediatric dose can cause similar potential side effects, such as fever, headaches, soreness and fatigue.

Pediatric vaccines are available at the Immunization Clinic in building 1900 here by appointment only on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8 a.m. to noon, and 1 to 3 p.m. Appointments can be made at https://health.mil/DAP.html.

Patients 12 and up can continue to receive their initial vaccines or booster doses on a walk-in basis at the times above.

Medical staff encourages families of pediatric patients to begin the vaccination series prior to the holiday season before potential risk of exposure due to travel and gatherings.

“While patients won’t be completely vaccinated before Thanksgiving, having the initial dose is better than having none,” said Gough. “The initial dose offers some level of protection until the full vaccine series is completed.”

Officials are also holding a mass point of distribution of the pediatric vaccine, as well as for children 12 and up, at the Hanscom Middle School Nov. 17 from 1 to 4 p.m. for eligible children residing  on Hanscom. A parent or guardian must accompany children to the POD.

For additional information, contact usaf.hanscom.66-abg.list.publichealth@mail.mil, or visit www.Hanscom.af.mil/Coronavirus