The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) encourages parents and guardians to make a plan for getting their 5-11-year-old children vaccinated against COVID-19. The CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is scheduled to meet Nov. 2 to discuss the recommendation for this age group, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will then make a final recommendation.
Vaccines are the safest, most effective way to slow the spread of COVID-19 and help avoid the worst outcomes — severe illness, hospitalization, and death – among those who do become infected. CDPHE launched a new webpage with information and resources about COVID-19 vaccinations in this age group, and additional information will be added when available.
“Being able to vaccinate 5-11-year-old children will be a crucial step in our COVID-19 response,” said Dr. Eric France, Chief Medical Officer, CDPHE. “Vaccines are the best protection against COVID-19, and we are excited to be able to offer this additional protection to more children in Colorado soon. We are rolling out a statewide campaign to ensure vaccines for this age group are readily available and easy for Coloradans to access.”
Parents and guardians can begin considering where they can get their children vaccinated. COVID-19 vaccines for 5-11-year-olds will be available at many of the same places administering vaccines right now — doctor’s offices, pharmacies, community vaccination events, local public health clinics, school-based health clinics, and more. Planning is also underway with partners to offer several large, recurring vaccine clinics during evening hours and weekends. Colorado’s Healthy Families and Workplaces Act entitles people to paid time off from work to take their child to a vaccine appointment or care for them if they experience vaccine side effects.
CDPHE encourages parents and guardians to talk with their children about the vaccine and the vaccination process in advance of their appointment. It is normal for children to have questions about vaccines or to be nervous about receiving one, and it can be helpful to empower them in the decision making process by involving them in decisions such as which arm they would like the vaccine in, or what they would like to listen to or watch on the way to the appointment. Helpful information for talking with children about vaccines can be found from trusted sources like CDC, CDPHE, and the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Healthy Children website.
Additional information about vaccines for 5-11-year-olds is available in Governor Polis’ press conference this week.
CDPHE also reminds parents and guardians to review COVID-19 Halloween guidance that includes tips and tricks for a safe holiday weekend — stay home if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, wear a COVID-19 protective mask, and encourage friends and family to participate in smaller, outdoor gatherings.
Continue to stay up to date by visiting covid19.colorado.gov.