Houston Health Department now offering COVID-19 vaccines for children six months and older

Children as young as six months old are now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine at any of the Houston Health Department’s four health centers.

Under the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), close to 20 million children 6 months through 5 years of age may receive their first dose of either the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine.

“Children under age 5 were the last group that remained highly vulnerable because of the lack of access to an approved vaccine,” said Dr. David Persse, chief medical officer for the City of Houston. “Vaccinating children will not only help keep Houston safer from COVID but also bring a sense of relief to parents since they have long awaited this vaccine.”

The Moderna vaccine is administered in a 2-dose series, with the second shot given a month after the first. The Pfizer vaccine is given in a 3-dose series with the second shot administered three weeks after the first, and the third given two months later.

COVID-19 vaccines have undergone and will continue to undergo the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history.

Children may experience fewer side effects than adults after receiving the vaccine including pain, swelling, and redness in the arm where the shot was given, fever, tiredness, headache, chills, muscle or joint pain, and swollen lymph nodes. Parents may see their children younger than three years old feel irritated, sleepy, or have a loss of appetite.

The department will also offer the vaccine at multi-service centers on a rotating schedule. Visit houstonhealth.org or call 832-393-4220 for information on locations and schedules.

COVID-19 vaccination at health department sites is free and does not require insurance or proof of residency.

Vaccines are also readily available at doctors’ offices, pharmacies, and clinics.