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SLO County children ages 5-11 now eligible for COVID-19 vaccination 

vaccineAppointments to be available at pediatricians’ offices, pharmacies and public health clinics

– San Luis Obispo County children ages 5-11 are now eligible to receive vaccination against COVID-19, following the formal recommendation of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID- 19 vaccine for this age group by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), and Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup.

Pediatricians across SLO County will be offering the vaccine at their offices, and appointments will also be available at local pharmacies and Public Health Department clinics.

“As parents, we all want to protect our children from harm—and now, we can give them a strong layer of defense against this terrible disease,” said Dr. Penny Borenstein, County Health Officer. “We are fortunate today to stand on the shoulders of previous generations who worked to develop and distribute life-saving vaccines, and the hundreds of millions of Americans who have already been vaccinated. My heartfelt message to parents is: give your child this protection, and talk to your pediatrician if you have any questions about the vaccine.”

This authorization follows a large-scale clinical trial with volunteers aged 5 to 11, which demonstrated the two-shot vaccine, a smaller dose of the same vaccine available for ages 12 and older, is safe and effective in preventing COVID-19. Children in the trial experienced the same mild side effects as many adults did during clinical trials, including arm soreness, fatigue, fever, or chills that lasted a day or two.

“When children are fully vaccinated, they will be able to more safely enjoy many of the activities they love and will also be less likely to pass the virus to older family members,” said Dr. Borenstein. “Now is the time to get protected ahead of the winter and the holiday season.”

Vaccine appointments for those age 5-11 will be available in the coming weeks as shipments of these smaller-dose vaccines arrive locally. Appointments will be available at Public Health clinics in Grover Beach, Paso Robles, or San Luis Obispo beginning the week of Nov. 15, and may be available earlier from pediatricians and local pharmacies. To schedule an appointment, visit myturn.ca.gov or VaccineFinder.org, or contact your pediatrician.

For updates on COVID-19 in SLO County, visit ReadySLO.org or call the recorded Public Health Information Line at (805) 788-2903. Phone assistance is available at (805) 781-5500 Monday – Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information on COVID-19 vaccine, visit www.RecoverSLO.org/Vaccine.

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The news staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote or edited this story from local contributors and press releases. The news staff can be reached at info@pasoroblesdailynews.com.