INDIANAPOLIS — The COVID-19 vaccine for children has already started to arrive in Indiana and members of the health care community said they are ready.
"I'm excited in the sense of, I will feel better for all of the patients in our community to be able to offer that," said James Wood, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Riley Hospital for Children.
Chief Medical Officer Dr. Lindsey Weaver said the state is prepared and ready to give shots immediately after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gives its approval.
Weaver confirms Indiana has more than 1,300 vaccination sites available for children, reaching every Indiana county. Those locations include places where you get the flu shot like pediatricians' offices, local pharmacies and possibly at some schools.
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Dr. Amanda Furr, with Community Health Network, said giving parents options is important.
"Here at Community, we want to be able to offer it in our primary care offices as soon as possible, as well as have pop-up clinics to help support local communities and school systems. We can get as much of these vaccines in arms, as soon as parents are ready," said Furr.
Health professionals want access to the vaccine for children to be as convenient as possible for parents.
"We are going to handle it similar to the flu vaccine every year. If your child is there for an appointment or for some other reason, but you're ready to have them vaccinated, we will have that available. We are also going to have special times," said Furr.
That’s because many in the health care community believe vaccinating elementary-aged children could be a game-changer to keeping our community safe.
"We are happy to see that the numbers of cases are coming down throughout the U.S. including Indiana. If we want to keep them down and keep this trend going, this is really the next big hurdle we have to get over," said Wood.