COVID-19 Vaccine

En Español

April 13, 2021

At Texas Children’s Hospital, our commitment to the safety and well-being of our patients remains our top priority, especially during this critical time. We are proud to be your choice for care and thank you for being part of our Texas Children’s family.

Currently, we are only vaccinating Texas Children's patients. As vaccines are available, we will contact those who meet the State’s criteria, and in accordance with our equitable allocation framework, to schedule an appointment. At this time, the Pfizer vaccine is only approved for people age 16 and older, and the Moderna vaccine is approved for those 18 and older. 

Please see below for a list of frequently asked questions and resources. It’s important to note that information about COVID-19 changes rapidly and this page will be updated with the latest information as it becomes available.

On April 13, out of an abundance of caution, the FDA and CDC issued a recommendation to pause the administration of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after reports of rare blood clotting in six recipients out of more than 6.8 million vaccinations administered in the U.S., until federal agencies can review the data further. Given this news, Texas Children’s is following this recommendation and has paused administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine only. Vaccination remains one of the most important steps you and your family can take to help end the pandemic, and we encourage all people who are eligible to get vaccinated. We will await further guidance from these federal agencies and continue to provide the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines. 

Given this news, if you have received the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine and experience severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary adult health care provider immediately.

Please sign in to your child's MyChart account to ensure your information is current so we can reach you in a timely manner. If you do not have a MyChart account, please call 877-361-0111 Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can my child receive the vaccine?

  • As vaccines are available, we will contact those who meet the State’s criteria, and in accordance with our equitable allocation framework, to schedule an appointment.

Which vaccine are you administering to patients?

  • Currently, we will administer the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Vaccines are allocated by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and patients will receive one of these products.
     
    On April 13, out of an abundance of caution, the FDA and CDC issued a recommendation to pause the administration of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after reports of rare blood clotting in six recipients out of more than 6.8 million vaccinations administered in the U.S., until federal agencies can review the data further. Given this news, Texas Children’s is following this recommendation and has paused administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine only. Vaccination remains one of the most important steps you and your family can take to help end the pandemic, and we encourage all people who are eligible to get vaccinated. We will await further guidance from health officials and continue to provide the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines.

As a parent or caretaker, will I also be eligible to receive the vaccine at Texas Children’s?

  • Currently, we will only administer the vaccine to our patients who meet the State’s vaccination criteria.

Can my child’s siblings also receive the vaccine at Texas Children’s?

  • Currently, we will only administer the vaccine to our patients who meet the State’s vaccination criteria.

Can my child receive the vaccine if they have symptoms of COVID-19?

  • If your child has symptoms of COVID-19 or is currently considered a close contact of someone with COVID-19, vaccination should be delayed until they have recovered from their illness and criteria is met for them to discontinue isolation.

Should my child receive the vaccine if they have already had COVID-19?

  • Yes. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourages vaccination regardless of history of prior symptomatic or asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection.

When will children younger than 16 be able to receive the vaccine?

  • At this time, the Pfizer vaccine is only approved for people age 16 and older, and the Moderna vaccine is approved for those 18 and older, as the early clinical trials did not include children and younger teens. We are hopeful children and younger teens will be eligible in the future once additional safety and efficacy data is available.

Which vaccines are currently available?

  • There are currently three vaccines whose manufacturers have received authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the U.S. for emergency use. The Pfizer vaccine is authorized for people age 16 and older. The Moderna vaccine is authorized for those 18 and older.

What is in the vaccines?

  • The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines use messenger RNA (mRNA) packaged inside lipid nanoparticles to teach the immune system how to generate antibodies against one of the proteins on the surface of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, so the virus can’t enter your cells. This technology has been used before to develop vaccines against SARS, which is how the manufacturers were able to develop and move these vaccine candidates into clinical trials so quickly.

Do the vaccines work?

  • Efficacy of two doses of the Pfizer and BioNTech vaccine is 95%. This means, in clinical trials, the vaccine prevented approximately 95% of COVID-19 disease in people who were vaccinated, and only approximately 5% of vaccinated people developed COVID-19 disease. Efficacy of two doses of the Moderna vaccine is 94.1%.

Are they safe?

  • From preliminary data, we know mild side effects are common. We know if you’re vaccinated, you should expect to experience some side effects, particularly after the second dose. These side effects are common and may occur after any vaccine. Although uncomfortable, these side effects are a sign that your immune system is responding to the vaccine and is learning to recognize the virus for the future. The short-term safety of these vaccines is clear.

Can a COVID-19 vaccine make me sick with COVID-19?

  • No. The vaccine only contains the genetic instructions to make a protein of the virus. It does not contain a whole virus that can replicate inside of your body. So, the vaccine cannot make you sick with COVID-19.

How long will the vaccines work?

  • We don’t know yet. As clinical trials progress, we’ll know more about how long immunity lasts and if booster doses will be necessary. Please remain vigilant to the practices which have proven successful throughout the pandemic – wear a mask in all settings, wash your hands frequently, maintain social distancing and avoid large social gatherings.

What can I do if my child is not feeling well?


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