WACO, Texas (KWTX) – Central Texas families lined up to get the COVID-19 vaccine for their children as clinics were offered through the weekend.
According to the state’s dashboard, 52 children ages 5 to 11 have been vaccinated with one dose in McLennan County and 84 in Bell County, but local health officials say those numbers are not even close to the updated count.
“Just the health district alone, in three days we vaccinated 311 children,” Kelly Craine, Waco-McLennan County Health District spokesperson, said.
That’s not counting those getting vaccinated at pharmacies, pediatricians, and hospitals.
Among those lining up to get the vaccine is the Bayer Family who got their three children in the age range of 5-11 their first dose on Friday. Their oldest son was already able to get the vaccine.
“Not a single side effect,” said Marcia Bayer, a mother of four, “I offered them ibuprofen thinking they might get a headache but they have been great.”
Her children have conditions that make them high risk so they were anxious to roll up their sleeves.
“My kids keep counting down when can we get our next one, when will we be fully vaccinated, how long until we get to see our grandparents so it’s just one step closer,” Bayer said.
The health district hopes this kind of enthusiasm continues.
“That is the school-age range and that means a lot more stability for our pre-k and elementary, middle school kids,” Craine said.
For some like the Bayer family, it’s more than stability. It’s getting back to life so they are thankful for community members willing to step up.
“Families like mine who this means a lot to, we are grateful for kids who are being brave and going out and doing this because it just shows our kids that they matter,” Bayer said.
Craine says people can stop by the health district anytime during their hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to get the vaccine or at any of the mobile clinics they have scheduled.
If you have questions about the vaccine and if it’s right for your family, she suggests talking directly to your pediatrician or you can talk to their nurses at the health district.
Written by Katie Aupperle