New York City Mayor Eric Adams City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan announced the city’s plan to roll out COVID-19 vaccines for children aged six months and older beginning next week.
To provide parents and guardians with the most flexibility and accessibility possible, the DOHMH has also been conducting educational outreach to healthcare providers.
Starting June 18 and pending further recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the DOHMH recommends parents and guardians reach out to their child’s pediatrician to see if they will make COVID-19 vaccines available at their offices.
Additionally, beginning June 21, parents and guardians can also use New York City’s COVID-19 Vaccine Finder to find convenient locations across the five boroughs to vaccinate young children, including 10 city Vaccine Hubs where the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine will be available for children aged six-months through, and including, five years of age.
“The next step towards a return to normalcy is around the corner for our youngest New Yorkers,” said Mayor Adams. “I know how long parents and caretakers of our little ones have been waiting for the moment their youngest would have access to a COVID-19 vaccine, and as soon as that moment comes, I want them to know we will be ready. We are looking to make this process as seamless as possible for parents, which is why we’re preparing, through city sites and partnerships with trusted pediatricians, to vaccinate and protect all of our children as soon as this vaccine is ready and shipped. Parents will also have numerous opportunities to ask their questions and should feel comfortable knowing this vaccine is safe and vital to their children’s health.”
These sites are expected to open on June 22, depending on final federal approval. The Pfizer vaccine will also be available at non-city sites to children six months and above.
“We’ve been waiting so long for a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine for our babies, and thankfully that time has arrived,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Vasan. “While we still await formal federal guidance, we want parents to know that the vaccine is here, it is safe, and it protects against COVID-19 and its most severe complications. As the city’s doctor, and as a father of a three-year-old, I have confidence in this vaccine, and I can’t wait to get my child vaccinated. I encourage parents to call their child’s pediatrician today or call 877-VAX-4NYC to make an appointment at one of our city sites next week. We’re ready for shots for tots!”
On the morning of June 17, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency authorization of the COVID-19 vaccine for children from six months of age and older. The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices is expected to meet this weekend and if they recommend the vaccination and approve it, young children will be able to begin getting vaccinated as early as next week.
“The provision of the COVID-19 vaccine to our youngest New Yorkers marks a historic milestone for New York City and our response efforts,” said Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Anne Williams-Isom. “From the start of the pandemic, we have taken strict measures to protect our youngest New Yorkers from the transmission of COVID-19, and we are thrilled to now be able to deliver the vaccine to children under five. The COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective, and I urge parents and guardians to get their children vaccinated in order to protect their health, and the health of their families and school communities.”