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Delaware Headlines

The state says it is prepared to vaccinate younger children

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Delaware Public Media
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With children under five now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, the state is gearing up to make it available to them.

The vaccine was recently cleared for younger children, and Delaware’s Director of Public Health, Dr. Karyl Rattay says the state recommends children under the age of five get it.

Rattay notes polling says many parents of children under five believe the virus doesn’t have much of an impact on that population.

She says that is not so.

"Tens of thousands of kids in this age group have been hospitalized. It's in the top 10 of leading causes of death among this young population, and it really is an infection that if you can prevent getting COVID at any age including this youngest population it's important to do so," said Rattay.

Some pharmacies will administer the vaccine, and Rattay says DPH clinics will be another place children can get vaccinated.

"So like we have all along, we're going to continue to provide vaccines for all populations for which vaccines are available. So we're really excited to start vaccinating this youngest age group in our public health clinics,” said Rattay. “We don't have it yet in all of our sites slowly, but surely it is getting delivered to our public health sites."

Rattay adds the state expects to have enough of the vaccine to vaccinate all of the children whose parents bring them in to get vaccinated.

The vaccine will also be available from pediatricians and primary care providers, where Rattay encourages you to ask questions about the vaccine if you have any issues whatsoever.

Rattay adds she’s thrilled the state has the vaccine now available for all ages, but concedes there is significant room for improvement in the numbers of people getting vaccinated and boosted.

She says that’s especially true in the pediatric population, and that children are very vulnerable to getting infected or re-infected with COVID.