Hawaii Pacific Health Launches COVID-19 Vaccination Efforts for Children Aged 6 Months Through 4 Years


toddler on the lap of a doctor at a covid vaccination site

Ten children ranging in ages from 14 months to 4 years received their first doses of the three-dose Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children younger than age 5 today at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children.

The children received their vaccinations after Hawaii Pacific Health received its shipment of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children 6 months through 4 years old earlier today.

“Keliʻimaikaʻi was born at the height of the pandemic, so we have been waiting his whole life for this day,” said Dr. Leah Dowsett, a Kapiolani medical genetics physician whose 2-year-old son received his first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. “He has missed so much in his short life, and we cannot wait to open our lives back up and instill some sense of normalcy. Pandemic parenting has been really tough.”

“It is incredibly important that parents now have the option to choose to vaccinate their youngest children, who have previously been left unprotected over the past several years of this pandemic,” said Dr. Kara Wong Ramsey, a neonatologist at Kapiolani whose 4-year-old also received a first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine today.

“mRNA technology has been around for decades; I know that this vaccine is safe,” Dowsett added. “The benefits of preventing severe disease, emergency department visits and hospitalization is what I want to provide for my child. We want to do our part to help protect the most vulnerable members of our community as well."

HPH will be offering Pfizer’s three-dose COVID-19 vaccine for children 6 months through 4 years old at vaccination events on Oahu and Kauai starting Saturday, June 25.

Parents and legal guardians can sign up now for vaccine events to be held during the following dates and times:

Kapiolani Medical Center (located at 1319 Punahou St.; check-in will be in the Diamond Head Tower lobby)

  • Saturday, June 25, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Sunday, June 26, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Kauai Medical Clinic – Pediatrics Clinic (located at 3-3420 Kuhio Highway, Suite B, in Lihue; use the main entrance to Kauai Medical Clinic and check in at central registration)

  • Saturday, June 25, from 8 a.m. to noon

Kapolei High School (located at 91-5007 Kapolei Parkway)

  • Saturday, July 9, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, July 10, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

In addition to the three-dose Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 6 months through 4 years, primary vaccine and booster doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 through 11 years will also be available. Appointments are required.

Vaccine Clinic Process and Appointment Scheduling

The consent process for children ages 6 months through 11 years to receive the vaccine begins with the online registration. A parent or legal guardian must schedule appointments.

By scheduling the appointment, the parent or legal guardian grants permission for administering the vaccine. Children must be accompanied to their appointments by a parent or legal guardian who will be required to show an ID at the time of check-in.

To schedule an appointment at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children and Kapolei High School, visit HawaiiPacificHealth.org/COVID19Vaccine.

To schedule an appointment at Kauai Medical Clinic, visit WilcoxHealth.org/Vaccine.

Additional Reminders and Considerations

  • Patients should arrive no earlier than 15 minutes before their scheduled appointment.
  • Adults and children older than 2 years are asked to wear masks at all times while inside the facility.
  • All children getting vaccinated must be accompanied to their appointment by a parent or legal guardian.
  • All parents or legal guardians must bring a photo ID, medical insurance card (if the patient has medical insurance), and a printed and completed checklist, which is available on the HPH website.
  • For safety and well-being consideration, patients will be monitored for any side effects by medical personnel for a minimum of 15 minutes after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine.

Tips and Notes for Parents

  • Dress children in comfortable clothing. The vaccine is given in the upper thigh for children 2 years and younger, so it is recommended that clothing be loose to allow easy access to the area.
  • Adults may prefer to hold their younger children in order to help them remain still while receiving their vaccination.
  • Consider bringing a favorite toy, book or item to make the experience less stressful for your child and for you.
  • Kapiolani’s Child Life specialists and Ruby, the medical center’s chief canine officer, will be at the Kapiolani COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic during designated times to provide extra comfort for patients.

Staff will be available to answer any questions parents and legal guardians may have, and to schedule a follow-up appointment for the second dose of the Pfizer three-dose series.

For COVID-19 vaccine updates or scheduling options at HPH facilities on Oahu and Kauai, visit HawaiiPacificHealth.org/COVID19Vaccine.

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Liz Chun Uyehara