Pediatricians getting doses as people under 18 make up about half of those getting COVID-19 vaccines in Wake County

RALEIGH, NC (WNCN) – About half of the people who received their COVID-19 vaccine in central North Carolina in recent weeks are under the age of 18.

Health experts said it was an increase they expected to see, but they are working to keep the numbers strong.
Both the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and Wake County Public Health make sure they get vaccines in the hands of pediatricians, which makes children and their parents more comfortable getting it.

Kaylin Mckoy, 14, received her first dose of vaccine on Tuesday through Wake County Public Health.

“I was nervous, but I didn’t feel it,” said McKoy.

Part of the reason she got it was her mom, as well as her friends.

“Most of my basketball buddies say they have it,” Mckoy said.

She can’t wait to see them and their faces back on the field.

“I can do what I love without wearing a mask right now,” she said. “I’m just glad I got it.”

Mckoy is among over 30,000 people between the ages of 12 and 17 to get their first shot in Wake County.

In the past two weeks, about half of the people vaccinated in Wake County were under the age of 18.

“We’re excited, but we’d like to wait a little bit to see what the data here shows in the next two months,” said Ryan Jury, division director of mass vaccination for Wake County.

In addition to giving injections to children, Wake County Public Health has assigned doses to pediatricians.

“It just seems relevant now to partner and collaborate with certain providers who can provide the vaccine in an environment that may feel more comfortable for individuals. In this case they are pediatricians, ”said the jury.

Dr. Emili Mack is one of them.

“It gives me a lot of hope,” said Mack, the owner of Mack Pediatrics. “I want the kids to feel comfortable going back to the school environment and going back to their families, so it was good to offer that to them.”

She said that not only did the kids love getting it, but parents have also unexpectedly changed their minds about getting it themselves since she can administer it.

“I think the best service I can do for those younger kids right now is to help vaccinate their reluctant parents,” Mack said.

As of Tuesday afternoon, about 200 kids have had their photo taken in Wake County so far this week, which is about the third of all kids getting it in the state this week.

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