RICHMOND, VA – The Virginia Department of Health (VDH) updated its standing order to align with FDA and CDC guidance, and children ages 5 years and older are now eligible for a Pfizer bivalent booster and children ages 6 years and older are now eligible for a Moderna bivalent booster. Similar to the recommendations for people ages 12 years and older, children in this age range are eligible for a bivalent booster if it’s been at least two months since their last dose. Richmond and Henrico Health Districts (RHHD) will begin offering bivalent boosters to children between the ages of 5 to 11 vaccines soon.
“This is great news for parents and children; staying up to date with COVID-19 vaccines is the best way to keep community levels low,” says Dr. Elaine Perry, Director of RHHD. “The bivalent booster offers additional protection against Omicron variants, which cause most of the current COVID-19 cases in the United States.”
Richmond and Henrico Health Districts (RHHD) clinical staff are working diligently to order supplies and adjust clinic schedules to begin offering bivalent boosters to this younger population as soon as possible. Clinic dates and appointments will be added to RHHD’s website once they are available. In the meantime, RHHD will pause offering monovalent boosters to children in this age range.
“We anticipate that finding an appointment might be a little more difficult during the first couple of weeks when clinics are ramping up and demand is high… this is what we typically see whenever a new population becomes eligible for a vaccine,” explains Amy Popovich, Nurse Manager at RHHD. “However, we anticipate more and more opportunities to open up at local health districts, pharmacies, and private providers in the next couple of weeks.”
To learn more about COVID-19 vaccination opportunities, visit rhhd.gov or call 804-205-3501.