Public health experts challenge vaccine hesitancy for children ages 12 to 15

Lake County mom says her son getting a vaccine is another step toward normalcy

LAKE COUNTY, Fla. – Public health experts say there has been some hesitancy among parents to have their child receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Almost a week ago, federal regulators cleared Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for anyone 12 and up.

The Director of Vaccine Education Center with the Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia Dr. Paul Offit said parents should trust the science and data.

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“While I understand that I think parents should be skeptical of everything that they put into their children’s bodies, at this point, you have enough information to say this vaccine is safe and effective,” Offit said.

Joyce Patterson and her 14-year-old son Dayshawn Mims said once the vaccine became available for use they were in.

“He has been homeschooled, I have been scared, I haven’t even been home to visit my mom,” Patterson said

The Lake County mom accompanied her son for his first dose and said it’s a means another step toward normalcy.

Public health experts say with more people immunized, the virus could have a harder time spreading.

“If I were to convince a parent, the thing that is the most compelling to me is these children with [a] multi-inflammatory disease, usually it’s a 6-14-year-old child,” Offit said.

The Florida Department of Health reports 20,600 in that age group have already received their first dose. In Central Florida, Orange County tops the list with 1,885 first doses administered. In Brevard County 513 have received the first dose. Sumter county is at the bottom of the list with only 12.

  • Brevard County: 513
  • Flagler County: 42
  • Lake County: 217
  • Marion County: 155
  • Orange County: 1,885
  • Osceola County: 365
  • Polk County: 454
  • Seminole County: 842
  • Sumter County: 12
  • Volusia County: 230