DUBUQUE, Iowa (KWWL) -- State and local health providers are already ordering Pfizer's new pediatric COVID-19 vaccines as the White House announced Wednesday plans to vaccinate more than 28 million children between the ages of 5 and 11.
President Biden announced local medical providers and pharmacies will be providing the new vaccine to the younger population rather than the massive vaccination clinics that were held in the past. This will only happen after the Pfizer pediatric vaccine is approved by regulators in the coming weeks. Approval by both the CDC and the ADIP is expected in the next two weeks.
Iowa’s Department of Public Health estimates there are about 254,000 people in Iowa who fall in the new age group. According to the IDPH Iowa will receive its first 99,000 doses after regulator approval and can get more as needed.
In Dubuque, UnityPoint Health- Finley Hospital said in a statement it already started distribution planning but is waiting until regulator approval for further action.
Kara Nadermann, the Director of Pharmacies at MercyOne in Dubuque, says they preordered the new vaccine already. They plan to distribute the vaccine both through their pharmacies and through smaller accessible clinics.
The one concern Nadermann has is making sure staff can differentiate between the vaccines.
“We’re working on that now too,” she said. “To be sure that our pharmacists and technicians can differentiate between the products and have a plan to be sure there are no errors related to any mix-ups because now we’re adding another COVID vaccine to the mix.”
Governor Kim Reynolds is encouraging all families to reach out to their pediatricians and medical providers to see if or when the new vaccine will be distributed.