ST. LOUIS - Following the approval of the Pfizer vaccine for children ages 5-11 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, Mayor Tishaura O. Jones, City of Saint Louis Department of Health Director Dr. Mati Hlatshwayo Davis, and SLPS Superintendent Dr. Kelvin Adams urged parents to vaccinate their children against COVID-19 to keep schools open, healthy, and safe. The leaders stressed that child vaccination is the key to protecting families against COVID-19, especially ahead of the holiday season, and will outline the city’s plan to get children vaccinated against the virus.

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“Pediatric vaccination is the key to protecting our children, protecting our schools, and protecting our communities,” said Mayor Tishaura O. Jones. “I made sure my son was vaccinated to make sure he can keep learning in-person and do the things he loves. Getting our kids vaccinated helps us keep our schools open, safe, and healthy while protecting families this holiday season.”

The city’s Department of Health outlined its community-focused effort to get children vaccinated against COVID-19, including partnerships with local schools, health systems, and federally qualified health centers, or FQHCs. The department has formed partnerships with Affinia, CARESTL, The Regional Health Commission, Family Care Centers, SLPS, independent, BJC, SSM, and Glennon, with more on the way. More information, including upcoming clinic dates and more information, can be found on the Department of Health website.

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“We must host children where they are most comfortable: schools, their PCPs/healthcare systems and the community groups that have earned their trust,” said Dr. Mati Hlatshwayo Davis. “We must also be considerate of times outside of school and work: after hours and weekends. Our plan directly addresses these concerns and barriers that particularly affect vulnerable communities time and time again.

SLPS will be holding vaccination clinics at Gateway Middle School, 1200 North Jefferson Avenue on Saturday, Nov. 13, and Dec. 4. Both will run from 9 am to 12 pm, with options for older children to get vaccinated as well. $100 gift cards will be available to any city resident getting their first dose.

“The new rules from the CDC offer our best path yet to some semblance of normalcy,” said Superintendent Dr. Kelvin Adams. “The more people we have vaccinated in our buildings, the safer students, faculty, and staff will be. I encourage anyone with an eligible child to have them vaccinated.”

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