COVID-19 Vaccines and Kids
Vaccinating children against COVID-19 helps provide immunity for youngsters, while helping to stem the spread of the virus and curb mutations that lead to new, more severe virus variants. Find out about the authorized vaccines, how they work, possible side effects and the benefits of having your children vaccinated.
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Call 216-983-0012 to schedule a vaccine.
Monday - Friday: 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Saturday: 8:00 a.m. – 4 p.m.
UH Rainbow Babies and Children’s and COVID-19 Vaccines
University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children’s is now providing vaccines to teenagers age 12 and older. Children must bring to the vaccination appointment a printed and completed consent form signed by a parent or legal guardian.
You do not have to be a UH Rainbow patient to receive COVID-19 vaccination at our Vaccine Clinic.
After receiving the vaccine, your child will need to stay for 15 minutes for observation, and then will receive a card stating he or she has received the COVID-19 vaccine.
Please know you must have a scheduled appointment with us to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. We are unable at this time to vaccinate people on a drop-in basis.
Children & Teens Can Get and Spread COVID-19
Fewer children have been sick with COVID-19 compared to adults. However, children can be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, can get sick from COVID-19, and can spread the virus that causes COVID-19.
Like adults, children who have COVID-19 but have no symptoms (“asymptomatic”) can still spread the virus to others.
Most children with COVID-19 have mild symptoms or no symptoms at all. However, some children can get severely ill from COVID-19. They might require hospitalization, intensive care or a ventilator to help them breathe. In rare cases, they might die.
To keep updated on current COVID-19 trends in children, visit the Ohio Department of Health – COVID 19 Dashboards for Children and Schools.
Learn more about coronavirus and its effects on children.
COVID-19 Vaccine Safety
Clinical leaders at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children’s believe that these vaccines, which were thoroughly vetted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), are recommended for the protection of each individual and the community against COVID-19.
The COVID-19 vaccines were studied in clinical trials for safety and efficacy according to rigorous standards set by the FDA before being made available for public use. Study protocols and results are available to the public to ensure transparency.
COVID-19 Vaccine and Children Frequently Asked Questions
- What ages can currently be vaccinated?
Children age 12 and up can currently be vaccinated.
- When can children younger than 12 be vaccinated?
Clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccine are still being completed for children ages 2 to 11. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expected to grant emergency use authorization of COVID-19 vaccine for ages 2 to 11 by September 2021, pending review of the clinical trial results.
- What is the benefit of vaccination for children and teens?
COVID-19 can cause severe medical complications and can lead to death in some people, including children. If your child gets COVID-19, they could spread the disease to family, friends and others around them – even if they have no symptoms. If your family, friends and people become infected, they could experience severe medical complications or even die from the disease. Also, it’s not completely understood at this point whether having COVID-19 results in long-term health effects. By vaccinating as many people as possible, this will help with limiting the spread of COVID-19.
- How do I know the vaccine is safe for my child?
In clinical trials, all authorized vaccines have been shown to be highly effective in preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19.
The first two vaccines authorized for use are messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines produced by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna.
The vaccines use genetic material called mRNA to teach the body’s immune system to fight the coronavirus. The mRNA in the vaccine activates the body’s immune system but does not change the body’s DNA.
Both vaccines have been authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for emergency use after examination of large clinical trials involving nearly 40,000 participants, which determined that these vaccines may be effective in preventing COVID-19.
- Will the vaccine affect my child’s future fertility?
There is no evidence that the COVID-19 vaccine affects future fertility.
- Which vaccine will my child receive?
Currently the Pfizer vaccine is authorized for 16-year-olds and older. This vaccine was authorized by the FDA for emergency use after examination of large clinical trials, determining that these vaccines may be effective in preventing COVID-19.
- My child has already had COVID-19. Do they still need the vaccine?
Yes. Your child should get the vaccine even if they have already had COVID-19. Even though having had COVID-19 may provide some protection from getting sick again, it is not known how long that protection will last.
- Should my child get the COVID-19 vaccine if they are currently sick with COVID-19?
People with COVID-19 can get the vaccine after they are feeling better and meet the criteria to stop isolation. Read the CDC’s guidelines on when you can be around others after having COVID-19.
Talk with your child’s doctor about when your child should receive the vaccine.
- Do COVID-19 vaccines protect my child from newly discovered strains of the virus?
The current COVID-19 vaccines do offer protection against the new coronavirus strains. The vaccines work by producing an immune response against the spike protein on the virus’s surface. To date, none of the virus mutations have altered this spike protein, and so the vaccines remain effective. Pfizer recently reported studies that looked at antibodies of people vaccinated and found that these antibodies neutralized the variant viruses.
- How many doses will my child need?
The Pfizer vaccine is given in two doses, with the second dose coming 3 weeks after the first.
- After my child gets a COVID-19 vaccine, can we stop wearing masks?
It’s unknown whether you can pass on the virus even after you receive the vaccine. So you should continue following recommended precautions such as wearing a mask in public, maintaining a physical distance of 6 feet from others and washing your hands frequently to prevent getting and transmitting the COVID-19 virus, especially while you are around others who have not been vaccinated.
- How much will the vaccine cost for my child?
UH bills patient insurance for an administration fee to cover costs of administering the COVID-19 vaccine. Insured patients are not responsible for paying this fee.
If you are uninsured, the administration fee is billed to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) program, which is designed to support care for the uninsured during the pandemic. Uninsured patients are not responsible for paying this fee.
There is no billing for the vaccine itself.
If you have questions about COVID-19 vaccination billing or any billing at UH, please contact our Customer Service Department at 1-800-859-5906. Hours are 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.
- Can I also get a vaccine when my child is getting vaccinated?
Yes. All residents of Ohio older than age of 12 are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. You can schedule a vaccine appointment for all eligible members of your family at UH. Phone 216-302-1448 to schedule vaccine appointments.
What Parents Should Know About COVID-19 Vaccines
It’s a misconception that COVID-19 only affects adults. As Amy Edwards, MD, Rainbow pediatric infectious disease specialist explains, it’s significantly worse than other respiratory viruses children typically face. In addition, teens are playing a significant role in the spread of COVID-19.Watch Now
Best Source of Info About Vaccines: Your Doctor
Hearing that vaccines are safe and effective directly from someone trained expressly in the medical care of children provides the reassurance that many parents need to move forward with vaccinating their children.Read More