Do kids need the COVID vaccine?

Health care workers answer questions about the COVID-19 vaccines.

Yvonne Maldonado, MD explains why children should get vaccinated for COVID when they are eligible.

I think people make that risk calculation all the time, right? It’s always about risk perception, “Should I wear a mask or not? What’s my risk?” I think every day, every decision we make is always about risk. I would make the point here that this is a disease that strikes randomly in children that is, we don’t know which children will be infected or not. We don’t know which children will be hospitalized or not, or who will die. Now, of the children who’ve died, half have had underlying conditions but half have not. So, you really are taking a risk.

There’s no doubt in my mind that we absolutely need vaccines for children. And by that, I mean, people under 18, everybody under 18 and for that matter for people of all ages. We know that vaccines are the most effective public health intervention to keep all populations safe and healthy.

This information is shared for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. The views expressed are those of the featured medical professional and reflect information available to that professional at time of filming. Always consult a health care provider for any personal health decisions. Click here for vaccine FAQs from the CDC.

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COVID vaccines are available at no cost to everyone ages 12 and older in the U.S., regardless of insurance or immigration status.

Use Vaccines.gov to find a location near you.