CHARLOTTE – Health systems, such as Atrium Health, Novant Health and StarMed Healthcare, have been registering children ages 5 to 11 for COVID-19 vaccinations beginning Nov. 4 following the FDA's authorization the week prior.

Officials with StarMed said the COVID-19 vaccination can protect children, as well as those around them, against the virus. Children and families are urged to continue social distancing, wearing masks in crowded places and washing hands, even after receiving a vaccination.

This is encouraging news and another great step toward ending the pandemic,” said Dr. Arin Piramzadian, chief medical officer at StarMed Healthcare. “It will not only give our children the power to defeat the virus, it will also provide them, their families, and their extending families better protection to celebrate the holidays together.”

Novant Health said appointments may be initially limited due to supply and demand. The system expects to receive more supply as part of the state’s phased allocation plan.

A second shot will be needed three weeks after the first shot to fully protect children. StarMed said children will received a scaled down dose of what adults received as well as a smaller needle for the injection.

Mecklenburg County will offer vaccination events as well. Contact your pediatrician for availability or visit www.MeckNC.gov/COVID-19 for details.

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