JOPLIN, Mo. – Freeman Health System is now scheduling appointments for children ages 5 to 11 to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at special vaccination clinics this month. The vaccine will be given in two doses 21 days apart at the Freeman Business Center at 3220 McClelland Blvd.
Two first-dose clinics are planned for Wednesday, November 17, from 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm and Saturday, November 20, from 8:00 am – 12:00 pm. Second-dose appointments are made at the same time and will take place December 8 from 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm and December 11 from 8:00 am – 12:00 pm. The pediatric vaccine clinics will be staffed with pediatric nurses as vaccinators. A Freeman pediatrician will be available to observe.
“We are grateful for our pediatricians and their teams who will offer a high level of expertise to answer parents’ questions,” said Rae Stites, Freeman Director of Provider-Based Clinical Operations. “This staff works regularly with children and will provide a great comfort level for them and their parents. We scheduled the clinics after school hours and on Saturday to make them more convenient for families. We have learned through the COVID vaccination process that delivering the vaccine in a mass clinic setting is the most efficient way to give the vaccine without waste. Each vial contains vaccine for up to ten shots.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends giving the vaccine to this age group. According to the CDC, children can be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, get sick from COVID-19 and spread COVID-19 to others. The CDC already recommends everyone 12 years and older should get a COVID-19 vaccination to protect against the coronavirus.
Locally owned, not-for-profit and nationally recognized, Freeman Health System includes Freeman Hospital West, Freeman Hospital East, Freeman Neosho Hospital and Ozark Center – the area’s largest provider of behavioral health services – as well as two urgent care clinics, dozens of physician clinics and a variety of specialty services. In 2020, Freeman earned dozens of individual awards for medical excellence and patient safety from CareChex®, a quality rating system that helps consumers evaluate healthcare providers. U.S. News & World Report named Freeman Health System the Best Hospital in Southwest Missouri for 2020-2021. With more than 320 physicians on staff representing more than 80 specialties, Freeman provides cancer care, heart care, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopaedics, children’s services and women’s services. Additionally, Freeman is the only Children’s Miracle Network Hospital in a 70-mile radius. For more information, visit freemanhealth.com.