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COVID-19 Vaccines for 5 to 11 year olds

Breadcrumbs
 

This page includes information and resources about COVID-19 vaccination for children 5 to 11 years of age.

Updates

Walk-ins for first doses starting January 25

  Book an appointment online

  Why it’s important for children to get vaccinated

  • Although COVID-19 symptoms in children can be mild, some have developed more severe symptoms or required hospitalization, even without underlying health conditions.
  • Some children can develop other complications from COVID-19 beyond the infection itself, including a condition called multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C).
  • Children can also have symptoms long after the COVID-19 infection has cleared.
  • COVID-19 has had a significant impact on children’s mental, social and emotional health.
  • The loss of in-person school and reduced social interactions with peers has led to increased stress and negative mental health for children.
  • Vaccination is a way to ensure that children can continue their routines of daily life and not miss important activities.

Where to get vaccinated

Children five to 11 years of age (must be five years of age or older on the day of vaccination) who live or study in Halton have several options to get their COVID-19 vaccine:

Review the clinic models below to make a decision about which setting will work best for your child. Addresses for the vaccination clinics and walk-in clinic hours are listed on Halton’s COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics webpage.

For more information about Halton Region Vaccination Clinics and accommodations, including transportation options, accessibility, private areas and language supports available, please visit Halton’s COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics webpage or call 311.

Halton Region Paediatric Clinics

Located in Burlington, Milton and Oakville

Virtual Tour – Halton Region’s Paediatric COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics (YouTube video link)

  • Best suited for children 5 to 8 years of age, children with differing abilities or are anxious about vaccination.
  • Smaller clinics with private rooms for vaccination.
  • Equipped with child-friendly signage in immunization rooms and TVs in recovery rooms.

Halton Region Community Clinics

Located in Burlington, Halton Hills, Milton and Oakville

Virtual Tour – Community COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics for children 5-11 (YouTube video link)

  • Best suited for children 9 to 11 years of age or children who are confident about vaccination.
  • Traditional immunization clinics in larger, open settings.
  • Children may be vaccinated in semi-private “pods”, at individual tables or open rows, depending on clinic location.
  • Private areas are available upon request.
  • Equipped with child-friendly signage.
 

Book your child’s vaccination appointment at a Halton Community COVID-19 vaccination clinic

  • Separate appointments are needed for each child.
  • First and second dose appointments are booked separately through our online booking system. Second doses are offered at a minimum of eight weeks after the first dose as recommended by the National Advisory Council on Immunization (NACI) (external link).
  • Children five to 11 years of age (must be five years of age or older on the day of vaccination) will receive the paediatric dose of Pfizer (10 mcg dose).
  • Adolescents 12 years of age and older will receive the 30 mcg dose of the Pfizer vaccine.
  • Parents of children born in 2010 but are not yet 12, are advised to book their second dose 8 weeks after their first.
  • It is recommended that children 5-11 years of age wait at least 14 days before and after they receive the COVID-19 vaccine and another vaccine.
  • Please keep checking back as more appointments are added.
 

Frequently Asked Questions

Please visit COVID-19 Vaccine Frequently Asked Questions for general COVID-19 vaccine questions. Don’t see your answer here? More FAQs are available from the Province, Paediatric Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine FAQs (external link) and from SickKids hospital: COVID-19 vaccine information for children (ages five to 11) (external link).

Health Canada authorized the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech Comirnaty COVID-19 vaccine in children 5 to 11 years of age in Canada (external link) on November 19, 2021. The COVID-19 vaccine has been tested in clinical trials for children age 5 to 11. mRNA technology is not new, it has been studied by scientists for decades. Health Canada has approved the vaccine as safe and effective for this age group, it meets quality standards, and the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks of COVID-19 infection.

Who should not get the paediatric Pfizer vaccine?

The paediatric Pfizer vaccine should not be given to children who:

  • have a fever, are sick with COVID-19 symptoms, currently have COVID-19 or have been instructed to self-isolate.
  • have an allergy to an ingredient in the vaccine or have had a previous severe reaction to this vaccine.

Visit Health Canada’s webpage for a list of paediatric Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine ingredients (external link).

The paediatric Pfizer vaccine is safe and effective in protecting children 5 to 11 years of age from getting sick from COVID-19. Results of clinical trials (external PDF) demonstrate children who received two doses of the Pfizer paediatric COVID-19 vaccine:

  • developed a strong immune system response; and
  • had a 91 per cent lower chance of getting sick with COVID-19.

Some children have mild side effects such as red arm, tiredness, chills and muscle/joint pain. These side effects go away after a few days. Serious side effects such as anaphylaxis or severe allergy are rare.

Long term side effects are not expected from COVID-19 mRNA vaccines. Side effects from vaccines in general usually happen with in the first 6 weeks after administration. mRNA vaccines have been studied in humans since 2013 with no known long-term effects.

No. The Pfizer vaccine for children uses a lower dose. Smaller vaccine doses are often used for children because children have stronger immune responses than adults.

No, vaccine doses are based on age not weight.

Children five to 11 years of age will receive the paediatric dose of Pfizer (10 mcg dose). Adolescents 12 years of age and older will receive the 30 mcg dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

Children who receive the paediatric dose (10 mcg dose of Pfizer vaccine) for their first dose and then turn 12 years of age by the time the second dose is due will receive the adult dose (30 mcg dose of Pfizer vaccine). 

As a precautionary measure, NACI recommends that children receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (10 mcg) at least 14 days before or after another vaccine. There may be circumstances when a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and another vaccine need to be given within this time – a healthcare provider can help with this decision.

Myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle) and pericarditis (inflammation of the lining of the heart muscle) has been reported following vaccination with mRNA COVID-19 vaccines. Myocarditis/pericarditis can be caused by many different infections, medications and other health problems. Classic myocarditis/pericarditis (unrelated to COVID-19) is less common in younger children 5-11 years of age (external PDF). It is unknown whether myocarditis/pericarditis will occur after the lower doses of mRNA present within paediatric COVID-19 vaccines for children 5-11 years of age. As myocarditis and pericarditis are rare side effects, the clinical trial did not detect these conditions among study participants.

As a precaution, children who experience myocarditis and/or pericarditis after a first dose of the vaccine should wait to get a second dose until more information is available. Children who have a history of myocarditis unrelated to COVID-19 vaccination should consult their clinical care team for individual considerations and recommendations. If they are no longer under active care for myocarditis, they may receive the vaccine.


 

How to prepare for your child’s vaccination

Prepare yourself

  • Learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine from credible information sources.
  • It is helpful to keep calm and positive. Children are very aware of your emotions.

Prepare your child

  • Like any vaccine, children may be nervous or anxious about the thought of COVID-19 vaccination. The COVID-19 vaccine is like any other vaccine and doesn’t hurt any more or less than other needles.
  • Talk to your child about the vaccine in a calm tone of voice and use positive language.
    • Explain to them what will happen: “The vaccine goes in your arm.”
    • Why the COVID-19 vaccine is important: “The vaccine will help keep you healthy.”
    • How it will feel: “You may feel a poke or a pinch.”
    • How long it will take: “It’s over before you can say ABC, 123”
  • Invite them to ask questions and address their concerns.
  • Help your child think of ways to keep themselves calm and relaxed. You can do this by teaching them how to:
    • Take deep breaths: Practice deep breathing with your child. Together, take a deep breath in and blow it out slowly. Have them pretend they are blowing out a candle.
    • Relax their arm: Show them how to relax their arm by keeping it loose and jiggly (like cooked spaghetti).
  • Have your child decide on a way to distract them from the needle. Some examples are:
    • Select a favourite toy or book that that they can bring to the appointment.
    • Shift attention – help them to think about a favorite positive experience during their vaccination.
    • Use technology – a phone or tablet to play a game, listen to music or read.
  • Make sure your child eats a healthy snack or meal before their appointment.
  • Have them wear short sleeves or something easy to pull up so the vaccinator can easily reach their upper arm.
  • Consider using a numbing cream or patch to dull the pain where the needle enters the skin. This should be applied approximately 30 minutes prior to injection. Contact your family doctor or pharmacist for more information.
  • Remind your child about the tips for staying calm that you have practiced.
  • Bring your child’s Ontario Health Card to their appointment. Children will not be turned away if they are not able to provide a Health Card.
  • Complete the COVID-19 screening for everyone who will be attending the clinic BEFORE you leave home if possible.
  • Have your child sit up during the needle. For younger children, hold them in a comforting hug.
  • Take deep breaths together and stay calm.
  • Remind them to relax their arm.
  • Encourage your child to use the distraction technique that they decided on.
  • Have them spot the Halton Heroes!
  • Tell them they can squeeze their knees together if they feel faint or dizzy.
  • Offer praise. Positive reinforcement works for kids of all ages. This helps your child feel good and boosts their confidence
  • Go to the recovery area and look for the Halton Heroes. Pick-up one of our Halton Hero mazes or colouring sheets, or just talk to your child about how proud you are of them.
  • Celebrate by enjoying a favourite activity together.
  • Refer to What to expect after COVID-19 Vaccine (PDF file) for more information on common side effects.
  • If you notice a change in your child’s health that worries you, contact your health care provider.
  • It is recommended that children 5 – 11 years of age wait at least 14 days before and after they receive the COVID-19 vaccine and another vaccine.

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