Some parents want to vaccinate children under 12, local doctors say it’s not a good idea


MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) – There are reports that some parents who are desperate to protect their children from COVID consider lying to health officials in order to get them vaccinated.

Right now, only those 12 and over are allowed to receive the coronavirus vaccine, and it should not be given to anyone younger.

Even though doctors at Tidelands Health said they haven’t seen parents lying in Horry County to get their children vaccinated, it’s not a good idea to do so.

Parents are keeping a close eye on the highly contagious Delta variant as the first day of school gets closer.

Pediatric Medical Director for Tidelands Health, Doctor Lucretia Carter said the only vaccine that’s available for children ages 12 and up is the Pfizer vaccine. Dr. Carter said children who can’t get the vaccine just yet, should take the suggested precautions like wearing masks and washing their hands.

Dr. Carter said if you are thinking of getting children younger than 12 vaccinated, you should probably wait.

“There are many trials going on with many different vaccines,” Dr. Carter said. “Hopefully, we are projecting that there should be some availability in the later fall but we don’t know. We are just going to have to wait and there are still a lot of trials going on.”

Clinical trials for the vaccine are currently underway for children under 12, but they’re not finished yet.

Currently, the Pfizer vaccine is the only one that’s available for children between the ages of 12 and 18. The Moderna and J&J vaccines are only for those who are 18 and over.

“Since we don’t know what the potential side effects can be, they are absolutely vulnerable to all sorts of side effects,” Carter said. “One of the things that would be looked at would be if they are requiring the same dose or if they need a lesser dose or an increased dose so we don’t know that information until the studies are done.”

DHEC and the CDC recommend children between the ages of two and 12 should wear a mask in public spaces and around people they don’t live with.

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