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‘This is a gamechanger’: Kentucky doctors encourage COVID-19 vaccines for kids ages 5 to 11

Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News First at Four
Published: Nov. 4, 2021 at 9:20 AM EDT
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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gave the green light for Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine earlier this week for kids ages five to 11.

“I’m not shocked by it, I am very excited actually,” said Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Fares Khater. “I was expecting it. This is a gamechanger for kids, families and everybody.”

Dr. Khater said the Pfizer dose that age group will receive is one-third the dose teens and adults receive. 28 million kids are eligible for a shot.

“One-third of the dose is all what’s necessary to make a robust immune response, you know, kids have a very strong immune response,” said Khater. “They don’t need the full dose to make protective immunity.”

A pediatrician WYMT talked with said vaccines are given mostly to kids. It is only because of the pandemic where we are mass vaccinating adults.

“With this COVID, it is just like any other disease, just like you get a flu vaccine, it is just a vaccine, that’s all,” said Dr. Hassan Mahmood with CHI Saint Joseph Medical Group.

Both doctors told us they do plan for their own kids to get a COVID-19 shot.

“So if it was not good, I would not have given to my own girls,” said Dr. Mahmood. “I’ve already talked to my kids and they’re going to be in line for the vaccine they are excited about it,” said Khater.

Parents should talk with their child’s healthcare provider before making a decision.

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