NewsLocal News


Local organizations begin planning for youth vaccine rollout

Posted at 9:00 PM, Nov 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-01 21:00:10-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Since the FDA approved emergency use authorization of the Pfizer vaccine for children, local organizations have begun prepping for the vaccine rollout.

It'll be a couple of weeks before vaccines roll out in Tallahassee. But in that time, expect to see more outreach from groups across the city.

Any day this week, the Center for Disease Control will give the green light to Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine for children aged five through 11.

But when will we see those shots at Bond Community Health?

"We have already requested and we're waiting for the vaccine. we don't know when it's going to come in," said Dr. Jake Shaw of Bond Community Health. "We're hoping by the end of the week because there's been so much preparation already"

For Florida A&M's site?

"One to two weeks," said Tanya Tatum, FAMU's COVID-19 vaccination site director. "That's kind of like the timeline that we've had in place, it may be a little bit longer since we are getting a new vaccine, they are repackaging the vaccine the vials for the rollout for the five to 11 year olds."

As health care workers await the rollout of the vaccines, they're also prepping parents for its arrival.

Dr. Jake Shaw with Bond Community Health is telling the parents of patients

"The vaccine has been thoroughly tested and proven to be safe and effective," explained Dr. Shaw.

Dr. Shaw also advocated for the entire family to visit the drive-thru site once kids are eligible.

On a broader level, the Leon County Coronavirus Vaccination Task Force is shifting its focus to the younger population.

Lashawn Gordon is a co-sponsor for the youth engagement portion.

"When you're working with youths, Gen Xers, Millenials, you have to build relationships," said Gordon.

In the coming weeks, the task force is hosting events catered to young people with music, games and the chance to have simple conversations about the virus.

"A lot of time has been cultivated listening to them and finding out what they want to do," said Gordon.

Now, time will be spent hearing what five to 11-year-olds have to say about COVID-19, all hoping to get them and their parents excited for the vaccine.

"We've had some elementary school kids join us in some focus groups," said Gordon. "Several of those kids said 'if I could, I would get vaccinated tomorrow.' Now, it'll be let's have a 5-11 focus group with their parents and siblings."

The next youth event for the task force is this Saturday at Old West Church.