Health officials see high demand for youth COVID vaccine in Juneau

A 9-year-old gets a flu shot after getting her COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, Nov. 11, 2021, at Riverbend Elementary School in Juneau, Alaska. (Photo by Rashah McChesney/KTOO)

Juneau Public Health began administering vaccines to young children under 5 years old last week. So far, 24 of Juneau’s youngest eligible population have gotten the shot.

“We’ve been booked! They filled up really quickly,” said Public Health Nurse Alison Gottschlich. She says the clinic usually only does vaccines on Friday, but they added Wednesdays because of the response.

The clinic has 200 vaccine doses — 100 Pfizer and 100 Moderna — for children aged 6 months to 5 years.

The first Friday of July is fully booked, but there are a few walk-in appointments available if you’re willing to wait.

“We are getting full. I think there’s still a handful of appointments available for next Friday, but we do have Wednesday appointments available. Beyond next Friday there’s still plenty of availability,” Gottschlich said.

Juneau Public Health has Wednesday and Friday appointments available through the end of July. The vaccine is also available at SEARHC and Juneau Urgent Care.

At a state public health presentation earlier this week, doctors stressed the important of vaccinating young children against COVID-19 to protect against the possibility of a severe case.

Claire Stremple

Alaska News Reporter, KTOO

I believe every Alaskan has a right to timely information about their health and health systems, and their natural environment and its management. My goal is to report thoughtful stories that inform, inspire and quench the curiosity of listeners across the state.

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