Bivalent COVID vaccine available for younger age group, demand not high yet

Published: Jan. 6, 2023 at 6:54 AM EST
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - In December, the Bivalent COVID-19 vaccines were approved for kids as young as six months old.

Previously, the updated vaccines were only available for people ages 5 and up.

Chatham County Nurse Manager Sierra Peebles says she wished demand was higher for this age group, which is 6 months to 4 years old, and that people would see why it’s important for their child to get.

The bivalent vaccine was reformulated and targets more than one variant of COVID. It targets the original strain of the virus plus two omicron subvariants.

Pfizer’s bivalent vaccine counts as a third dose for kids in the youngest age group while Moderna’s bivalent vaccine takes the place of what would be the booster dose. Peebles says parents do have a lot of questions and concerns about this new vaccine and whether or not it’s safe for their child, which she says could be one of the reasons for the low demand.

“Unfortunately, we have not seen a very large demand in that six month to four-year range, which became eligible last month. Only about 5 percent of little ones in the state of Georgia, in that age range, has only gotten one vaccine. In Chatham it’s 4%, so we really want to see that number grow. I hope we can see that number grow,” Peebles said.

Peebles says if you have any concerns, the best option is to call your pediatrician or local health department to determine what’s best for your little one.

Peebles says the number of COVID-19 infections is rising right now, so this is a great option to help protect your kids and yourself from catching or spreading the virus. You can go to any of the health departments in the 8 counties that are in the Coastal Health District to get it.