Ky. parents weigh the decision to vaccinate kids for COVID-19

Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 10:17 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The approval of the Pfizer shot for young teens could be key for Governor Beshear to further lift restrictions and capacity limits that are in place. Some parents say they will definitely sign their child up to protect them, and help get us back to normal, while others say they don’t believe children need the shot.

As COVID-19 vaccine rates have slowed down across the nation, the 12 to 15 year age group becoming eligible could be the boost Kentucky needs to get numbers and life back to normal.

“Once we know when that is going to occur, we believe that we’re going to be able to set a timeline for 100% capacity. Certainly, in events, venues, businesses, etc. with under 1,000 people,” Gov. Beshear said.

It’s that slice of normal that one mom said is a key factor to getting her kids vaccinated when they’re eligible.

“He really complains a lot about the mask. He says it’s a hassle. I really think every child going to school should have it,” parent Angela Carter said.

But others don’t believe vaccinating young children is necessary, citing low numbers of cases among children.

“I wouldn’t have my kids do it, but I think it’s great for those parents that are worried about it. I just don’t think kids are at that big of a risk for the disease,” grandparent Marival Tanner said.

In Kentucky, just over 15% of the state’s total cases have been in children ages newborn to 19. But that’s still over 68,000 cases.

“They did additional studies specifically on adolescents and tweens and they have found Pfizer to be incredibly safe and very well tolerated,” Kentucky Public Health Commissioner Dr. Steven Stack said.

Dr. Stack says early studies show the vaccine is 100% effective from serious illness in the younger age group, and Moderna could be approved for younger populations in the next couple months.

Gov. Beshear said Monday that he does want to give some time for the younger age group to get vaccinated before he lifts capacity restrictions.

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