DALLAS – Dr. Angela Moemeka receives the same questions during her son’s ball games, at the supermarket, from friends, strangers and the patient’s parents.
“What’s next? When is this going to start? And do you want it in your office?”
She can’t provide concrete answers yet, but one question parents might ask themselves is, “How soon do I want my child to be vaccinated?”
Within hours of Wednesday’s decision by a CDC panel to recommend emergency use of Pfizer’s COVID vaccine in adolescents ages 12 to 15, vaccine sites already distributing the Pfizer injection made plans to expand suitability.
RELATED: Are You Planning to Vaccinate Your Kids Against COVID? Doctors want you to keep this in mind
The Pfizer vaccine will be available Thursday and Friday to anyone 12 or older in Dallas, Tarrant and Denton counties at various clinic locations.
So if you want to get an injection in your child’s arm as soon as possible, provincial clinics are probably the best option.
If you prefer a well-known physician in a familiar office environment, you should wait.
But pediatricians believe it won’t be long before they give injections.
“We understand it should be in a week or two,” said Dr. Seth Kaplan, a pediatrician at Frisco’s TLC Pediatrics and president of the Texas Pediatric Society.
“We placed our first order in my office [Wednesday] and hope to have a vaccine next week or the week after, ”he said.
RELATED: Dallas ISD Plans COVID-19 Vaccine Options for College Students
In early May, the Texas Department of State Health Services sent letters to about 3,000 pediatricians across the state encouraging them to enroll as vaccine providers.
Kaplan said the state has since issued good guidance that has calmed concerns about receiving large amounts of doses that would be impossible for independent practices to administer on their own.
“We will really be able to look at our policies and procedures and think a lot about this as we have done flu clinics in the past,” Kaplan said.
He said if families are ready to get their children vaccinated, they should make any appointment they can get at a public clinic or pharmacy.
“Gunshots is what’s important right now,” he said.
RELATED: Here’s What Parents Need to Do Now that the FDA Approves a COVID-19 Vaccine for Adolescents
Just communicate that to your child’s doctor.
Moemeka suggests calling your pediatrician or primary care physician so they can look up a medical history to make sure there are no contraindications.
“Then get the vaccine wherever you can get it,” she said.
“I think most pediatricians are going to say if you can get it before I can get it, go ahead.”