LANSING — To better help fight the omicron variant of COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded the use of bivalent COVID-19 vaccines for children ages 6 months through 5 years. This follows the U.S. Food and Drug Administration amendment of Emergency Use Authorizations for Moderna and Pfizer bivalent COVID-19 vaccines.
“This is great news that more children will now have the opportunity to update their protection against COVID-19 with the bivalent vaccine,” said Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, MDHHS chief medical executive. “We encourage parents and caregivers of those eligible children to get their bivalent vaccine as soon as possible, especially as we head into the holidays and winter months where more time will be spent indoors. It is important that all Michiganders stay up to date on vaccines to better protect communities and families against severe illnesses, hospitalizations and deaths.”
The Moderna and Pfizer bivalent vaccines target two strains of COVID-19 – the original strain of the virus and the most widely-spread omicron variants (BA.4 and BA.5).
Bivalent COVID-19 vaccines are available for some individuals 6 months of age and older. Talk to a health care provider to discuss what vaccines you may be eligible to receive.
Individuals who receive the bivalent vaccines may experience similar side effects reported by individuals who received previous doses of the original (monovalent) mRNA COVID-19 vaccines.
Symptoms may vary when children are infected with COVID-19, and unvaccinated children can still infect those around them even if they are not showing symptoms. Getting children vaccinated helps keep communities safe.
When getting any vaccine, you’re encouraged to bring your COVID-19 vaccine card or immunization record to show the vaccine provider. Downloadable immunization records are accessible for adults 18 and older free of charge at the Michigan Immunization Portal. Visit Michigan.gov/ MiImmsportal and upload a valid government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license, state ID or passport. If you do not have records in the portal or are seeking records for a child under 18 years of age, contact a health care provider or local health department.
To date over 6.8 million Michiganders have gotten at least their first dose of safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines. Eligible Michiganders are encouraged to stay up to date on vaccinations, which includes bivalent doses that provide extra protection, and residents of long-term care facilities where outbreaks can spread quickly and extra protection is strongly recommended.
MDHHS also encourages Michigan residents to pay attention to local guidance as some communities may be at a higher risk of COVID-19 transmission.
To schedule a COVID-19 vaccine, visit vaccines.gov.
To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit Michigan.gov/ COVIDvaccine.
To learn more about the clinical guidance for COVID-19 vaccine visit the CDC website.
For more information about COVID-19 in Michigan, visit Michigan.gov/coronavirus.