INDIANAPOLIS — A recent poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation found about one-quarter of parents with kids between 5 and 11 years old would vaccinate them immediately after emergency approval.
Four in 10 wanted to wait and see how it worked.
“There’s just too much at stake,” said Indianapolis mom Victoria Barrett.
That’s why, as soon as she can, Barrett will be making appointments to get her sons, Finn, 6 and Ewan, 5, the Pfizer vaccine.
It’s a moment she’s been waiting for since the pandemic began.
“I am ready, and they are ready, we’re ready,” said Barrett.
Just last month, Barrett was getting the boys ready to head back to school in Indianapolis and hoping, despite them being unvaccinated, mask requirements and their school’s safety protocols would keep them safe.
After they get the vaccine, some of that worry will be lifted for Barrett.
Some of of that worry has already been lifted for Diana Dinges. Her 13-year-old daughter, Audrey, got the vaccine right before school started this year.
Dinges also is vaccinated. Next up is her 11-year-old son Brecken.
“I’ve always believed in vaccinations and medicine for my children, and to me, this is not any different,” said Dinges, who added she didn’t get Audrey vaccinated right away, but instead waited to see if new information would emerge. In the end, though, Dinges said her daughter asked to get vaccinated.
“Yeah, I did have some hesitation, but what we do know about COVID is that people have died from it,” Dinges added.
That hesitation is gone now.
“There’s nothing I love more than my kids and this, for me, is protecting them and others,” said Dinges.
For mom Lauren Bower, the hesitation remains.
“It just comes down to how much do we know about the specific vaccine, and we don’t have longer-term studies,” said Bower.
Bower says she’s not against vaccines, but she and her four kids, ages 10 through 17, won’t be getting this one.
“For me, I’m relatively young, my kids are young. They’re healthy. We don’t have underlying health conditions, but if you would ask me should my parents get vaccinated, yes, I was telling them to get vaccinated because they’re in their 70s,” Bower added.
For Barrett, the rewards of her young children potentially avoiding a severe case of COVID versus the risks of side effects from the vaccine are worth it.
“I feel like even though it rolled out quickly, it’s been in so many bodies that I do think we know it pretty well,” said Barrett.
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