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Seven-year-old Kaidan Brooks of Emporia has been waiting patiently to get protected against COVID-19. On Tuesday afternoon, he rolled up his sleeve and got his first dose of the Pfizer vaccine at Riverside Elementary School.

Lyon County Public Health is ready to offer COVID-19 vaccines to children. And Tuesday evening’s first session was expected to be busy.

“We have just shy of 200 kids signed up for this first clinic,” spokesman Justin Ogleby said Tuesday afternoon. “We’ll have several vaccinators working at the same time.”

The first clinic is at Riverside Elementary School in Emporia. Two more for ages 5-11 are planned before Thanksgiving.

“They are not as full as this first one,” Ogleby said.

The next children’s clinic will be Thursday evening from 4 - 8 p.m. at Walnut Elementary School. The third will be next Tuesday at the same time at Timmerman Elementary.

Ogleby recommends parents allow 30 minutes from the appointment time for the vaccination process to take place.

“There shouldn’t be too much of a line,” he said. “Then they’ll have to sit around for 15 minutes, just like everybody else.”

That could seem like an eternity to some children. But Ogleby said the United Way and the Greater Emporia Disaster Relief Foundation have plans to keep them amused, by showing a movie and presenting prizes.

“We want it to be a fun experience,” Ogleby said.

No data is available yet on how many Lyon County children already have the Pfizer vaccine. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment plans to introduce statistics on that Wednesday.

“I know there have been quite a few people that have been getting their child vaccinated through Walgreens, Walmart and some of those other pharmacies,” Ogleby said. “They can’t wait until we’ve had our clinics. They’re that excited for it.”

As of Monday, 388 children younger than 12 had developed coronavirus in Lyon County. Two children have been hospitalized as a result, but none have died from it.

As for grown-ups, Ogleby said the department’s COVID-19 booster shot clinics have been busy

“They have all been full,” Ogleby said. “We’ll be having a third one on Nov. 30, and that one is full as well.” That event will be inside the Anderson Building at the Lyon County Fairgrounds.

KDHE databases show 65.5% of Lyon County residents age 12 and older have received at least one coronavirus shot, with 60.5% receiving two doses.

The Lyon County Public Health office provides Pfizer vaccines on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Appointments for vaccinations can be made online at PublicHealth.LyonCounty.org.

(1) comment

Aim_High

Good to see the 5-11 year olds are both smarter and braver than your average right winger.

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