BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — It’s been two weeks since 12 to 15-year-olds became eligible to get the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. This coming as local school districts in Kern County begin rolling out vaccine clinics for their students.
“It’s a very scary experience for a lot of folks but they reassured them, hey, you’re going to be hereafter the vaccine,” said Jennifer Garcia. “You’re going to have folks here making sure you’re okay a lot of folks are getting water and support, so it was really reassuring.
Garcia, 24, went to the Panama Buena-Vista School District to oversee her 14-year-old sister receive the COVID-19 vaccine Thursday.
“The information was also not too wordy. So, we were like, got it!” Garcia said. “This is what we’re supposed to feel, this is not what we’re supposed to feel!”
The Center for Disease Control says kids and teens may feel some side effects like chills and arm soreness, which was all explained on a form Garcia says the district nurses gave her.
Nancy Gordon with the district says that the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine the Food and Drug Administration greenlighted for 12 to 15-year-olds is the same dosage for adults, and after the shot, they’ll monitor children on-site for 15 minutes.
“We want to know if they’re going to have that immediate reaction, so we always have our pharmacist here on board,” Gordon said. “Obviously all of our district nurses have that certification.”
With the recent CDC investigation on cases of heart inflammation in some young people that typically appear four days after their second COVID-19 vaccine dose, pharmacist, co-founder and owner of Inovia Pharmacy, Yasser Haykal reassuring parents that the vaccine is safe for the age groups eligible.
“If it reaches a concerning point, the vaccine or the medication would be put on hold until further investigation or findings,” Haykal said.
Haykal adding he currently believes the benefits of the vaccine far outway the risks, when the alternative is a virus that he says could potentially lead to hospitalization and in some cases death.
“When you think about it this way, I can assure you that the vaccination has been dramatically reducing the risk for sickness and the risk for hospitalization and this is, for now, the tool to end this pandemic and put a stop to the spread.”
Garcia says the clinic may be advertised for preteens and teens in the district but it’s open to everyone.