COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Weekly Updates

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COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Weekly Updates

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Minnesota Department of Health

July 7, 2022


Resources for answering common COVID-19 vaccination questions

COVID-19 isn’t that severe in children, so why should my healthy 3-year-old child get vaccinated?

  • COVID-19 can be serious for children, even otherwise healthy children, and we can’t predict which child will have a severe case, so prevention is important.
  • COVID-19 has caused over 2 million cases among children ages 6 months through 4 years in the U.S.
  • Children in the 6 months through 4 years age group had more hospitalizations during the predominance of the Omicron variant compared to children in older age groups.
  • More than half of children hospitalized for COVID-19 ages 6 months through 4 years had no underlying conditions.
  • COVID-19 associated hospitalizations among children ages 6 months through 4 years have similar or increased severity compared to older children and adolescents.
  • Burden of COVID-19 associated death is similar to or exceeds that of other pediatric vaccine preventable diseases.

My child already had COVID-19 and recovered just fine, why do they need to get vaccinated?

  • As Omicron continues to be the main variant circulating, people are more likely to be re-infected if they are not vaccinated compared to people that have been vaccinated. The improved antibody response after vaccination gives a person added protection. So, even if a child has had COVID-19, they should still get vaccinated.

Which vaccine is better for my child, Pfizer of Moderna?

  • Both COVID-19 vaccines were found to be safe and effective by the FDA and CDC.
  • It is expected that these vaccines will be highly effective in preventing severe illness, including hospitalization and death in children because we’ve seen this data in older age groups.
  • It’s difficult to directly compare efficacies of the two vaccines. Studies were done at different times with different variants circulation and using different methods.
  • Both vaccines stimulated the immune system to provide a good level of protection that we’ve seen in all other age groups.
  • Pfizer has less systemic effects and fever, but it does require three doses. Moderna is a two-dose series but there may be more fevers post vaccination.
  • Because either vaccine will require several weeks for series completion and then for immunity to develop, parents should consider getting the vaccine that is most easily accessible rather than seek out or wait for a specific product.
  • Starting the COVID-19 series now might help children be protected in time for back-to-school or a potential wave in the fall.

Are these vaccines safe for my child?

  • The clinical trials for children under 11-years-old did not have any reports of rare side effects like myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle), pericarditis (inflammation of the lining outside the heart), or anaphylaxis (an allergic reaction).

Resources for providers when addressing questions from parents and caregivers:

Resources for providers:

FDA recommends inclusion of Omicron component in COVID-19 vaccines boosters

On June 28, 2022, the FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) discussed whether there would need to be a change to the current vaccine strain composition in the current COVID-19 vaccines. After discussing, the committee did vote in favor to include an Omicron BA.4/5 component in COVID-19 vaccines that would be used for boosters beginning in fall 2022. See the FDA media statement: FDA Recommends Inclusion of Omicron BA.4/5 Component for COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Doses for further details. 

Updated schedules for COVID-19 vaccine in MIIC forecaster

In accordance with the recent recommendations, MIIC now forecasts a first dose of Spikevax-MOD and Comirnaty-PFR for people ages 6 months and older. Other changes in the forecaster include a first booster dose for anyone ages 5 years and older and a second booster dose of a mRNA COVID-19 vaccine four months after the date of the second dose for people ages 50 years and older. If you have questions regarding the forecaster in MIIC, please contact the MIIC help desk at

Webinar: We Can Do This: Educating Nurses and Pediatric Staff About new COVID-19 Vaccines for Children

On July 12 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) will be hosting a webinar titled: We Can Do This: Educating Nurses and Pediatric Staff About new COVID-19 Vaccines for Children.

Wanda Montalvo, PhD, RN, FAAN, a senior fellow and team lead for public health integration and innovation at NACHC, will talk with pediatrician Lisa Costello, MD, MPH, about vaccine benefits, administration, and availability, as well as answer some commonly asked questions. Erin Hemlin, MA, partnerships lead for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ COVID-19 Public Education Campaign, We Can Do This, will share new provider and patient education materials on pediatric COVID-19 vaccines that the Campaign has developed.

Register at National Association Of Community Health Centers WebEx Enterprise Site

Find previous bulletins at COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Updates.