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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

DC To Begin Vaccinating Kids 5-11 This Week

On Tuesday, Nov. 2 following official approval from the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for use of the COVID-19 vaccine in kids aged 5 to 11, Mayor Muriel Bowser and DC Health announced that families will be able to begin getting children five and older vaccinated against COVID-19 as early as Wednesday, Nov. 3.

The announcement, released late Tuesday night, seemed to indicate that some sites will be able to begin vaccinating elementary-aged children as early as Wednesday. However, as of 11 p.m. Tuesday night, there were no locations listed on coronavirus.dc.gov as opening Wednesday to younger kids.

Update, Wednesday, 12:30 p.m.: DC Health announced taht on Friday, Nov. 5, DC Health will host pop-up vaccine clinics for children ages 5 to 11 at two community centers: Takoma Community Center in Ward 4 (300 Van Buren St. NW) and Ft. Stanton Recreation Center in Ward 8 (1812 Erie St. SE).

Parents or guardians can bring their children between the hours of 3:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. to receive their first dose of the pediatric Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. Parents who are unable to bring their child will have the option to print and sign a form allowing a trusted family member to accompany their child to the pop-up vaccine clinics; those forms will be made available on coronavirus.dc.gov.

Officials said that many additonal sites will begin vaccinating children as they receive supplies. That’s likely to be later this week, the statement said.

At a Nov. 3 press conference, DC Health Director LaQuandra Nesbitt was asked how the District will ensure equitable distribution of the vaccine among the District’s children. When the vaccine was initially released to adults in spring 2020, affluent white residents were first to secure appointments.
Nesbitt said that because there is so much more vaccine available in November 2021 compared to the initial public launch in April 2020, there is less need for a rigorous appointment system.  “We can offer walk-up opportunities, no appointment, as early as Friday,” she said. Nesbitt said that, in addition, DC Health has looked at where children in these age groups live and will place pop-up clinics within walking distance in those wards and neighborhoods.
According to the DC Office of Planning (OP) there were 46,010 children between the ages of 5 and 11 living in the District in 2020. 5,437 called Ward 6 home. 16,804 live in Wards 7 and 8 combined, the majority, 9,598, in Ward 8.
Nesbitt said that given the available supply, it is most important that families to choose to vaccinate their children. “When you have an equitable program, you can design a system, but people have to want to be vaccinated,” she said.
“People have to listen to facts and not myths when they make decisions about how to be vaccinated,” Nesbitt continued. “When you look at race and ethnicity data, it is not always an access issue; it is a choice issue, in terms of who is choosing to be vaccinated.”
Of those aged 12 and older, and so currently eligible for the vaccine, 38 percent are vaccinated in Ward 7 and 45 in Ward 8, compared to 64 percent in Ward 4 and 59 in Ward 3.
Mayor Muriel Bowser speaks at a Nov. 3 press conference on access to the COVID vaccine for 5-11 year olds.

Asked if the COVID vaccine would be required for school attendance, Bowser reminded reporters that the COVID-19 vaccine is compulsory for certain school athletes over the age of 12. But she stopped at a full response. “We also want our kids in school full-time,” Bowser said, alluding to masking and testing regimes that she said keep kids safe and in school.

As the District learns which sites have received their vaccine doses started vaccinations, that information will be updated on coronavirus.dc.gov. Additionally, vaccines.gov will get updated with which sites have the pediatric Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

Nesbitt said that District was able to order pediatric vaccine supply in what is called “three pulses,” more than a week ago. On Oct. 29, the Office of Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) said that the District is expected to initially receive 24,600 doses. 18,000 were ordered directly by the District; the rest are coming to qualified providers through a federal-retail partnership.

“The arrival of a safe and effective vaccine for children is a monumental moment in the fight against COVID-19,” the Mayor’s Office said in a press release. In the coming days and weeks, every family who wants to have their child vaccinated will be able to conveniently access a free and safe vaccine.

New vaccines need to be ordered before children start getting the COVID vaccine. The recommended dose for children is a third that of adults —10 mcg to the adult dose of 30 mcg, said a representative for Pfizer. It is packaged 10 doses per vial, with a unique label and different color cap. “The pediatric doses will be available in smaller packaging configurations to better suit the needs of pediatric clinics,” the representative said.

On Oct. 20, the Biden administration said that unlike in the initial rollout, there is expected to be more than enough supplies of the Pfizer vaccine for eligible children. The White House told the Associated Press that about 15 million doses could be shipped to providers in the first week after it is approved by the CDC and FDA.

In the coming days and weeks, the vaccine will be available at more than 60 District pharmacies, hospitals, and health centers across all eight wards.

Beginning this weekend, the District will host pop-up vaccination clinics for children 5-11 years old at schools and other sites.

Although the Mayor’s office said that these sites will not require appointments, much of the other information, such as which sites will be open on specific dates and for what hours, remains unknown. Bowser’s Office says more information about specific sites and hours for pop-up clinics this weekend will be released in the coming days as doses are received.

Below are sites that will receive initial doses of the pediatric Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

Because many sites will not be able to begin vaccinating children until later this week, families are encouraged to check providers’ websites and coronavirus.dc.gov for more information about which sites have received their doses and started vaccinating children.

Ward Facility Name Address
Ward 1 Children’s National Hospital – Columbia Heights 3336 14th St. NW
Community of Hope – Marie Reed Health Center 2155 Champlain Street NW
Giant Pharmacy 378 1345 Park Rd. NW
Howard University Family Practice Plan 2041 Georgia Ave. NW, 3300 Tower
Kalorama Pharmacy 1841 Columbia Rd. NW
Mary’s Center – Ontario Road 2333 Ontario Rd. NW
Safeway Pharmacy – Columbia Road 1747 Columbia Rd. NW
Unity Health Care, Inc. – Upper Cardozo Health Center 3020 14th Street NW
Walgreens Store 17712 1306 U St NW
Ward 2 Alpha Peoples Drugs 1638 R St NW STE 1
Children’s Pediatricians & Associates – Foggy Bottom 2021 K ST NW Suite 800
MedStar Georgetown Internal Medicine 3800 Reservoir Rd NW
Michelle Barnes Marshall, MD PC 2440 M street NW Suite 317
Safeway Pharmacy – Corcoran Street 1701 Corcoran St NW
Safeway Pharmacy – Wisconsin Avenue 1855 Wisconsin Ave NW
Ward 3 Safeway Pharmacy – Connecticut Avenue 5545 Connecticut Ave NW
Spring Valley Pediatrics 4850 Massachusetts Ave, NW, Suite 200
Walgreens Store 4445 3301 New Mexico Ave. NW
Ward 4 Children’s National Hospital – Shepherd Park 7125 13th Place NW
Mary’s Center – Georgia Avenue 3912 Georgia Avenue NW
Safeway Pharmacy – Georgia Avenue 3830 Georgia Ave NW
Safeway Pharmacy – Piney Branch 6500 Piney Branch Rd NW
Ward 5 Children’s National Hospital 111 Michigan Ave NW
Community of Hope Family Health & Birth Center 801 17th Street NE
CuraCapitol 1140 Varnum Street NE Suite 200
Mary’s Center – Ft. Totten 100 Gallatin St NE
Safeway Pharmacy – Maryland Avenue 1601 Maryland Ave NE
Unity Health Care, Inc. – Brentwood 1251b Saratoga Ave NE
Ward 6 Children’s National Hospital – Shaw 641 S Street NW
Grubb’s Pharmacy 326 E Capitol St NE
Kaiser Permanente Capitol Hill 700 2nd St NE
Perry School 128 M Street NW #50
Safeway Pharmacy – 4th Street 1100 4th St SW
Safeway Pharmacy – 14th Street 415 14th St SE
Safeway Pharmacy – L Street 490 L St NW
Ward 7 Children’s Pediatricians & Associates – Fort Davis 3839 1/2 Alabama Ave SE
Elaine Ellis Center of Health 1627 Kenilworth Ave. NE
Safeway Pharmacy – 40th Street NE 322 40th St NE
Safeway Pharmacy – Alabama Avenue 2845 Alabama Ave SE
Unity Health Care, Inc. – East of the River 4414 Benning Road NE
Unity Health Care, Inc. – Minnesota Avenue 3924 Minnesota Ave NE
Unity Health Care, Inc. – Parkside 765 Kenilworth Terrace NE
Ward 8 Children’s National Hospital – Anacostia 2101 Martin Luther King Jr Ave SE
Children’s National Hospital – THEARC 1801 Mississippi Ave SE
Community of Hope Conway Health & Resource Center 4 Atlantic Street SW
Family and Med Counseling 2041 Martin L. King Jr. Ave. SE, Suite 303
Giant #384 1535 Alabama Ave. SE
Unity Health Care, Inc. – Anacostia

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