The COVID-19 vaccine is being rolled out across the United States this week for children aged six months and 4 years.
This means that approximately 20 million infants, toddlers and preschool children under the age of 5 are now eligible for strikes after being authorized by the US Food and Drug Administration last week.
As of Wednesday, 2.7 million doses of the Pfizer-BioTech and Moderna vaccines were distributed nationwide, the US Department of Health and Human Services told ABC News.
Parents who want to schedule appointments can visit vaccines.gov, a joint website run by HHS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and VaccineFinder from Boston Children’s Hospital.
Vaccines.gov opened on Tuesday, a few days earlier than planned. The website currently has 1,591 locations, including children’s hospitals, doctors’ offices, community sites, clinics and pop-ups offering shots.
To use the tool, people can click on the “Find COVID-19 Vaccines” button on the home page.
On the next page, users enter their ZIP code and click on the vaccine type depending on the age group they want to receive.
It is important to choose the right age group since Pfizer’s three-dose vaccine for children is one-tenth the dose given to adults, but the modern two-dose vaccine is 25 micrograms, about a quarter of its adult dose.
Dr. Barack is an infectious pathologist and ABC News contributor at Boston Children’s Hospital. John Brownstein said the number of locations is expected to increase to over 10,000 in the coming weeks.
“Of course, we understand there’s a lot of anxiety, and parents have been waiting a long time to get these vaccines,” Brownstein said. “At some point, supply will outstrip demand. Any parent will have access in the coming days. It will take time to get vaccines, but there will be plenty to supply.”
The Biden administration says that 85% of children under the age of 5 live within five miles of a potential vaccination site.
“HHS has received orders for approximately 4.2 million doses so far,” the agency told ABC News. “We initially made 10 million dose vaccines available to order. Soon there will be millions more available, so the supply should not be disrupted for anyone to vaccinate their young child.”
For those who don’t have access to the Internet or are not Internet literate, they can call 1-800-232-0233, which helps them schedule appointments in English, Spanish and other languages.
Brownstein recommends that people contact their family doctor or pediatrician to schedule an appointment or ask where to find appointments.
“It makes perfect sense [to contact them]”He said.” There you have a formal relationship. “
Getting vaccinated can be challenging if it is not convenient for these young people to be vaccinated.
According to the CDC, only 30% of American children between the ages of 5 and 11 are vaccinated, compared to 75% of children over the age of 12.
The challenge is that many young children will not be able to receive their vaccines in pharmacies, as many states do not allow pharmacists or trained pharmacy staff to vaccinate children under the age of 3.
Cheyenne Haslett of ABC News contributed to this report.