LITTLE ROCK, Ark – The wait for covid-19 vaccines could finally be over for parents in Central Arkansas.
Little Rock pharmacists say they could be giving out vaccines for ages 5-11 years old by the first week in November.
“I feel like there will be a mad rush at the beginning,” said Kavanaugh Pharmacy owner Anne Pace.
Pace says her team has been getting calls for weeks as parents anticipate the approval of the Pfizer vaccine for young children.
“Parents are ready to get their kids vaccinated so their kids can get back to their normal lives,” said Pace.
“We’ve been kind of keeping an eye on when it is available,” said Little Rock parent Bethany Blake.
Blake has three children, two of them are in the 5-11 age range. Blake says she wants to get her children vaccinated as soon as the approval comes in after a few hard years at school.
“I was really hopeful that we could have a mask-free, pandemic-free school year but when delta started to rise in the summer, we knew,” said Blake.
Cassandra Funes has two under the age of 12 that go to school in Conway. She says she’s hoping the vaccine will give them the extra layer of protection they need.
“If I can do something that will lessen their symptoms rather than them ending up in the ICU, I’m definitely going to give them back that added protection,” said Funes.
Back at Kavanaugh Pharmacy, Pace says the Arkansas Department of Health could start ordering vaccines this week. Approval is still needed from the FDA but Pace says they are planning to mean next week.
“Hopefully, November 3 or 4 we will be able to start vaccinating kids,” said Pace.
Until then Pace says her team is getting ready for the rush. They are getting volunteers in place to run their vaccine clinic and setting up a sign-up list.
Right now, the list isn’t open, but Pace said it should be open by the last week in October.
UAMS and Arkansas Children’s are also expected to offer vaccines for 5-11 but so far there is no sign-up list.
The Pfizer Vaccine for children will be a different formula so pharmacists say they will have to have two separate supplies: one for ages 5-11 and another for 12+.