Arizona parents weigh in on COVID-19 vaccines for their kids

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(AP Photo/Raul Mee)

PHOENIX — Many Arizona parents will likely rush to get their kids vaccinated once the COVID-19 vaccine is approved for younger children, but not every parent.

“I will not vaccinate my daughter,” Chantelle Turner of Mesa told KTAR News 92.3 FM. “She has special needs, and I think that that would be unsafe for her.”

Turner added she doesn’t have any fear of her 8-year-old daughter getting COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Janna Stults of Mesa can’t wait to get her two daughters, ages 8 and 10, vaccinated.

“I’ve actually sought out trying to enroll them in a clinical trial to see if that might be able to get us access to the vaccine a little bit more quickly,” she said.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has authorized the COVID-19 vaccines for kids 12 years and older. They can currently get the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

Clinical trials are underway to test vaccines in younger children. Pfizer-BioNTech is testing its vaccine in kids 6 months to 2 years old, while Moderna is testing its vaccine in kids ages 5 to 11.

USDA last week asked both vaccine makers to expand their trials for 5- to 12-year-olds as a precaution to look for a rare side effect of heart inflammation, which turned up among vaccinated people younger than 30.

For Stults and her husband, the vaccine authorization for her daughters can’t come fast enough.

“We’re just patiently waiting,” she said. “I expect that the vaccine will probably be available in November or October. That’s my hope anyway.”

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