In early 2021, I made the decision as a married mother of 3 children to join a COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial. After an exhausting 9+ months of watching COVID essentially turn the world upside down, I felt compelled to act.
I needed to feel like I was doing something to help others during this pandemic.
I needed to feel like I had some sense of control back in my life.
I wanted to show my kids that science is not something to be afraid of and is pretty amazing.
I wanted to support the scientific community and all of their efforts on behalf of us all.
Today, COVID vaccines are available to everyone in the United States ages 5 and up. And while the choice to get yourself and your children vaccinated may not be an easy one, having all the facts certainly takes the guesswork out of the decision process. We are proud to partner with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to present you with these facts.
COVID Vaccines Work
We all want a return to the days where we could safely visit friends and family, especially those considered high-risk. COVID vaccines help prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death, and help reduce the spread of the disease. Both the CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend everyone ages 5 and older get a COVID vaccine as soon as possible.
COVID Vaccines are Safe
Millions of Americans, including children, have safely received COVID vaccines under the most rigorous safety monitoring in U.S. history. Children ages 5-11 are given a smaller dose that has been specially tailored for younger children. Those 12 and older are given the same dosage as adults.
Some parents may be concerned about side effects from the vaccine. Temporary side effects may include fever, pain/soreness at the injection site, nausea, fatigue and headache. And while side effects can occur and are not pleasant, the fact is that children are at a much higher risk from complications from COVID infections than the vaccine.
Contrary to some misinformation being spread, children are at risk from severe disease. Vaccines are the best way to protect our kids and ourselves from severe disease and death.
COVID Vaccines are Readily Available
It’s now easy and convenient for everyone ages 5 and older to get a COVID vaccine and help protect our families and our communities from this disease. The vaccines are completely free and available to everyone, regardless of health or immigration status.
There are several ways to find vaccines near you:
- Visit vaccines.gov
- Text your ZIP code to 438829 (GETVAX)
- Call 1-800-232-0233
- Contact your child’s pediatrician or their school for vaccine availability. Many schools and health care providers are offering vaccine clinics to make it easier for children to get vaccinated.
If you want to learn more about the benefits of getting vaccinated or have questions about vaccine safety or effectiveness, I encourage you to talk to your child’s healthcare provider to make an informed decision. The American Medical Association reports that over 96% of doctors have been fully vaccinated against COVID. You can also research the vaccine for yourself at cdc.gov/coronavirus.
Our children have endured so much the past two years as a result of the pandemic. But now, we have a way out of this nightmare we’ve been stuck in. Vaccinating our children can make it possible for them to safely return to school, sports activities, play dates, and their favorite group activities. Together, moms, #WeCanDoThis.