Don Herrington

Don Herrington is interim director at the Arizona Department of Health Services.

Nearly 400,000 additional Arizona children are now eligible for COVID-19 vaccines that are giving millions of others safe and highly effective protection from severe illness.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have authorized the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines for use in children as young as 6 months. 

“We’re excited to be able to protect preschoolers and toddlers from severe illness and potential long-term effects from COVID-19,” said Don Herrington, interim director of the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS). “Vaccination also will reduce the chances that kids will spread COVID-19 to older individuals and others at greater risk of hospitalization and death.” 

The Pfizer vaccine, which had been available to everyone 5 and older, is now available to children 6 months through 4 years old. Federal officials also have authorized Moderna vaccination for children 6 months through 5 years old.

Arizona has around 390,000 children who are between 6 months and 5 years of age. 

Since November, about 205,000 Arizona children ages 5-11 have received at least one dose of the Pfizer vaccine, about a third of kids in that group and similar to uptake nationally. Meanwhile, 71.6% of all Arizonans and three-quarters of eligible Arizonans have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine. 

COVID-19 vaccinations for the youngest children are expected to begin as soon as Monday, June 20. Check when your provider plans to begin offering them. The ADHS Vaccine Finder at azhealth.gov/FindVaccine will be updated to include sites with vaccinations for children as young as 6 months.

To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines and vaccination, visit azhealth.gov/COVID19Vaccines and azhealth.gov/VaccinesForKids. If you have questions specific to your child’s situation, consult your health care provider. 

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