County partners with healthcare providers on pediatric Pfizer COVID-19 vaccinations

Friday, November 5, 2021

With the federal and state approval of pediatric COVID-19 vaccines, Benton County Health Department is coordinating COVID-19 vaccination with pediatricians and health care providers in the county. Partnerships with public schools and other community based organizations continue as vaccination of children 5-11 years old begins.

On November 2, The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup completed its review of the vaccine’s approval process and unanimously concluded that the Pfizer vaccine is safe and effective for youth 5-11 years of age. The Oregon Health Authority gave its final approval for vaccinations for the age group to begin in Oregon. Information about 5-11 year old eligibility is available from the Oregon Health Authority.

Benton County Health Department began receiving a small supply of pediatric vaccines this week. Many local pediatric offices have submitted their orders and expect them in the coming weeks. Parents and guardians of newly eligible individuals are strongly encouraged to seek vaccination at their pediatrician’s office, or other medical offices and local pharmacies. 

“Vaccines available to young children, which now includes the COVID-19 vaccine, serve to provide immunity before children are exposed to potentially life-threatening diseases.  That protection also helps others in the community,” said Benton County Public Health administrator, April Holland. “Early in our vaccination efforts, we worked to engage with providers and pharmacies across the County to build a strong vaccination infrastructure in the places where vaccines are normally sought. Your pediatrician is an excellent source of information; speak to them if you have questions about vaccination.” 

Benton County Health Department is partnering with schools and community organizations this fall to offer pediatric-focused vaccination clinics. Because of the high demand and currently limited supply, Benton County is limiting upcoming County-run vaccination clinics to youth and families who experience barriers to access. Appointments are required for these vaccination events and priority scheduling will occur through and by the schools, community based organizations, and Federally Qualified Health Centers. Community members with access to a pediatrician are encouraged to seek pediatric vaccinations at their provider’s office.

Vaccines are free for all and no identification or proof of address is needed. Individuals do not have to live permanently in Oregon to receive COVID-19 vaccination.