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Mixed Reactions From Parents As Maryland Prepares To Vaccinate Children As Young As 5

BALTIMORE (WJZ) --  A new wave of COVID-19 vaccinations ramping up nationwide. Kids ages five and older are already rolling up their sleeves.

Pfizer expects to ship 11 million doses of its shot for kids in the coming days and while some parents rush to get their child vaccinated many of still hesitant.

A recent poll finds nearly a third of parents will not get their child vaccinated. That's more than the 27 percent who say they will.

"Every time I get a news alert, I click on it waiting, praying that it will be available for younger kids," said Lindsey Kerr.

Lindsey Kerr is a mom to three and a half-year-old twins and while they aren't eligible to get vaccinated just yet. She says it's exciting to know they're one step closer.

"The faster we get vaccines for kids, the better we will be able to get back to normalcy," said Kerr.

As the state prepares to distribute COVID shots to kids as young as five, the excitement is growing but so is the concern.

"We don't know how it's going to affect our children in the long run, later on," said Shar Simmons.

Parents like Shar Simmons share concerns about the unknown long-term side effects and doctors say, it's not likely there will be any.

"If you're going to see a side effect, it's going to be in the first few days more often or in the first two weeks at the longest," said Dr. Krugman at Sinai Hospital.

Dr. Scott Krugman, a pediatrician at Siani Hospital, says he gets two common questions a lot -- first about infertility.

"There's no scientific plausible way that can cause infertility," said Dr. Krugman.

The second is about a rare side effect of heart inflammation.

"That's usually within the first week or two in the second dose in teenage young adult males more than females, and it's very short-lived, and it's very mild, and the kids who get that it's resolved in a day or two," said Dr. Krugman.

Dr. Krugman says the risk of the vaccine is much less than the virus itself and parents like Kerr agrees.

"I trust science. I think it's vital to make sure kids are vaccinated so we can fully come out of the pandemic," said Kerr.

Another concern for parents is whether children will need booster shots.

Doctors say it depends on where we head with the pandemic and studies would have to be done on boosters in children.

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