MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee’s youngest residents now have the chance to get their doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for free, as the city’s health department shares their availability at three community sites: Menomonee Valley and Northwest and Southside Health Centers.
For Mayor Cavalier Johnson, a father of young children himself, the approval of the vaccine for kids as young as 6 months old couldn’t come fast enough.
“Everyone wants to put, COVID, the pandemic behind us, but it's not done with us. We need to take every precaution necessary to make sure that all of us are safe,” said Johnson.
Milwaukee health leaders say the FDA’s latest Emergency Use Authorization of the two products is a game-changer in the fight against COVID in our state.
“During the Omicron surge, children under 5 years old were hospitalized at a rate five times higher than when Delta was the dominant variant. COVID-19 is among one of the leading causes of death for children in this youngest age group,” said Dr. Heather Paradis, Chief Medical Officer, Milwaukee Health Department
Leaders say they face another hurdle: vaccine hesitancy and the spread of misinformation on the shot’s effects.
However, Milwaukee County’s Chief Health Policy Advisor Dr. Ben Weston says the city hopes to stop that by working with community partners to answer any questions parents may have and even knocking on doors to bring the doses directly to where people are.
“When you see your friends, your neighbors, your extended family doing that and being successful with it, I think it overcomes your hesitancy and it helps to overcome those barriers and you're more much more likely to get vaccinated as well,” said Dr. Weston.
For anyone looking to get shots at one of the city’s three sites, no appointment is necessary, masks must be worn, insurance information won’t be taken and all children under 17 need to have parent or guardian consent before getting their dose.
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