Healthy You - Every Day

LVHN is Vaccinating Children Age 5-11 With the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine

Image
Vaccinating Children Age 5-11 With COVID-19 Vaccine

Para español, haga clic aquí.

Families can now schedule Pfizer-BioNTech vaccinations for children age 5-11 by appointment only at all Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) COVID-19 vaccine clinic locations and select Lehigh Valley Physician Group (LVPG) Pediatrics practices. This is in response to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granting the vaccine emergency use authorization (EUA) for this age group on Friday, Oct. 29, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) endorsing it on Tuesday, Nov. 2. The vaccine was previously granted EUA for children age 12-15 in May 2021, and its original EUA in December 2020 included children age 16-18.

“We at Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital strongly encourage COVID-19 vaccination for children 5 years of age and older,” says J. Nathan Hagstrom, MD, Chief of Pediatrics at Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital. “The FDA has reviewed data for this age group and found the vaccine to be not only effective, but safe as well.”

While children are less likely to be severely affected by COVID-19 than individuals in other age groups, they can still become infected, experience symptoms from the disease and need to be hospitalized. Some also develop multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), a complication that involves inflammation of certain organs (including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes or gastrointestinal organs).

In addition, infected children can spread COVID-19 to other individuals, including those with preexisting conditions and compromised immune systems.

“It is LVHN’s responsibility to protect the children and adults in our community,” says Hagstrom. “Being able to vaccinate younger children against COVID-19 will not only protect them, but their families and the community members they interact with as well.”

While the vaccine for children in this age group consists of the same components as the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for other ages, the dose is significantly smaller (10 micrograms instead of 30 micrograms), and the needles used to administer it are smaller as well.

How to schedule

There are two easy ways to schedule your child’s appointment:

  1. Go to MyLVHN, the health network’s patient portal:
    Sign In Sign Up

You may need to request proxy access to your child’s MyLVHN account to schedule their appointment. To do so, please contact your child’s provider. If your child does not have an LVHN provider, please call 888-402-LVHN (5846).

  1. Call our COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline at 833-584-6283 (833-LVHN-CVD). We’re open Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Locations

Through MyLVHN or the COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline, your child's vaccination will be scheduled at one of LVHN’s five clinic locations or one of the two participating LVPG Pediatrics practices. Please note: You cannot directly schedule through these clinic or practice location pages. These links are for location information only.

  1. COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic–Northampton Crossings
  2. COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic–Pocono
  3. COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic–Hazleton
  4. COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic–Schuylkill
  5. COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic–MacArthur Road
  6. LVPG Pediatrics–Trexlertown
  7. LVPG Pediatrics–Richland Township

Possible side effects

The pediatricians at our Children’s Hospital offer the following guidance for parents:

  • Common side effects of the vaccine are pain, redness and swelling in the arm where you received the shot, as well as fatigue, tiredness, mild headache, muscle pain, chills, fever, swollen lymph nodes and nausea.
  • These side effects can affect your child’s ability to do daily activities but should go away in a few days.
  • In children and adolescents, these side effects may be more common with the first dose than typically seen in adults.
  • You may want to give your child acetaminophen four times a day for the first one to two days at the appropriate dosing after receiving the vaccine.
  • Please don’t give your child ibuprofen or acetaminophen before they receive the vaccine.
  • To reduce pain and discomfort where your child got the shot, apply a cool, wet cloth to the spot on the arm where the shot was given.
  • Encourage your child to drink lots of fluids and wear light clothing if they have a fever.

Upcoming parent education session

Pediatric specialists from our Children’s Hospital will be hosting a virtual information session on child COVID-19 vaccination on Wednesday, Nov. 17, from 5:30-6:15 p.m. Learn more and register at LVHN.org/parentsessions.

For more vaccination information, visit LVHN.org/vaccines.

Explore More Articles