Updated: April 09, 2021 11:12 PM
Created: April 09, 2021 06:33 PM
WEBSTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — More than 70 teenagers are receiving their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at a pop-up clinic set up by AcuteKids Pediatric Urgent Care in Webster.
News10NBC's Patrick Moussignac went to the clinic at Klem South Elementary School. The pop-up vaccination site for high school seniors opened Friday evening.
More than 70 teens are receiving their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at Klem South Elementary School in Webster. AcuteKids Pediatric Urgent Care says this is the first of several pop-up clinics they will host over the next few weeks. pic.twitter.com/SIj9mWHLDN
Medical researchers say with children making up about 22% of the U.S. population, getting them vaccinated is crucial to achieving herd immunity. Experts say unprotected children can spread the virus to others in their household.
Dr. Jennifer Nayak, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Rochester Medical Center, says current Pfizer trial vaccine results have shown that children in the 12 to 15 age group are mounting a robust response to the vaccine which is still being tested.
Nayak says parents like her should be enthusiastic about getting their teens signed up to get vaccinated.
"I think if you look at the vaccine, the vaccines have been shown to overall be safe," Nayak said. "They've been shown to be very effective including the data that's been released in this age group."
More teens being vaccinated at the pop-up vaccination clinic in Webster. pic.twitter.com/WYHgAabRXB— Patrick Moussignac (@WHEC_Moussignac) April 9, 2021
Later this year, Nayak will participate in a Moderna clinical test trial for a vaccine for pediatric age children from six months to 11 years old.
Erin Kernan is a student at the University of Buffalo but came to Klem South Elementary School to help keep herself, and others safe from the virus.
"I'm really happy that this is starting to become accessible to everybody, and now that more people can, start to get vaccinated and things get back to normal, and I just feel it's great that everyone is coming out here to do it," Kernan said.
Kynere Meeks also signed up as soon as he could.
"I'm just ready for everything to go back to how it was. That played a big part this year especially school, didn't get to go back to school full time," Meeks said.
Chrysa Charno is the CEO and Clinical Director of AcuteKids Pediatric Urgent Care in Webster. She says they were given more than 70 doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. In less than two hours, every available slot was taken.
"So it's kind of cool cause we're able to service not only teenagers but their parents if they haven't had another opportunity to be vaccinated," Charno said. "We know that the kids can be asymptomatic carriers of this and even though the symptoms may be mild in our children. Simple as a cold, or allergies, or simple headache we know that if we pass it on to our parents or grandparents you know they are at higher risk, that they can have dire consequences."
Webster Central School District parent Holly Rock was happy to see all the teens eager to step up and get their shots.
"There's a comfort level to that, and my hope is that there's going to be some positive peer pressure that will let some other kids feel comfortable doing the same," Rock said.
AcuteKids Pediatric Urgent Care has been allocated another 200 doses of both the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines for their soon-to-be scheduled pop-up clinic. This one is open to anyone 18 and above.
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