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Hoosiers ages 5-11 now eligible for COVID-19 vaccine

The kid-sized vaccine will be available on a walk-in basis Wednesday, Nov. 3 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the vaccine clinic outside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Department of Health said Hoosiers ages 5 to 11 are eligible to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for kids — just a third of the amount given to teens and adults — will be available on a walk-in basis Wednesday, Nov. 3 at the vaccine clinic outside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, located in the IndyCar parking lot at 4551 W. 16th St. across from Gate 2. The vaccine clinic is open Tuesday - Friday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon.

“Having a COVID-19 vaccine available to our younger Hoosiers is a game changer in terms of our efforts to keep children healthy and in school for in-person learning,” said State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG. “Fully vaccinated individuals do not have to quarantine if they are exposed but have no symptoms, so I encourage parents to get their children vaccinated if they are eligible.”

Parents can schedule appointments for their child to get vaccinated beginning Thursday, Nov. 4 at 8 a.m. at ourshot.in.gov or by calling 211 or (866) 211-9966.

The announcement comes one day after the final approval from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. 

The Food and Drug Administration already authorized the shots for children ages 5 to 11, but the CDC recommends who should receive FDA-cleared vaccines.

RELATED: As shipments to Indiana begin, what's the difference between the vaccine for kids aged 5-11 and others?

The announcement by Walensky came only hours after an advisory panel unanimously decided Pfizer’s shots should be opened to the 28 million youngsters in that age group.

Millions of shots made by Pfizer and its partner BioNTech have already been shipped to states, doctors’ offices and pharmacies, to be ready for CDC's decision.

The vaccine requires two doses three weeks apart, plus two more weeks for full protection to kick in. That means children who get vaccinated before Thanksgiving will be covered by Christmas.

A Pfizer study of 2,268 children found the vaccine was almost 91% effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19 infections. The FDA examined 3,100 vaccinated kids in concluding the shots are safe.

RELATED: Riley doctor discusses Pfizer's COVID vaccine for kids age 5-11

Since the pandemic began, at least 94 children aged 5 to 11 have died from COVID-19, more than 8,300 have been hospitalized and over 5,000 have developed a serious inflammatory condition linked to the coronavirus.

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