The Prince William County Health Department is now accepting appointments for children 5 to 11 years old for COVID-19 vaccines at the Woodbridge Community Vaccination Center at the old Gander Mountain store.

The clinic near Potomac Mills mall had been made a bit more comfortable to put children at ease, said Jason Fawcett, Vice President of Operations for AshBritt, a Virginia Department of Health partner contracted to distribute vaccines.

“I think you want, as a parent, to do everything you can to facilitate kids coming through, and making it a little bit lighthearted” by adding some signage for children, Fawcett said.

At the main entrance, there are now kid-friendly graphics, designed by award-winning illustrator Nathan Jarvis, which are then used in all the directional signage during the sign-in process.

Hannah Stone, AshBritt’s communications director, said child doses are only accessible at community vaccination centers or participating CVS pharmacies, but will soon be available to family medical practices and pediatricians. There are no walk-in vaccines available for children. An appointment must be made online, but can also be made same-day.

Stone said the center is prepared to administer 1,000 child vaccines a day, on top of 500 adult doses for first, second or booster shots, which can be walk-ins. The CVS is equipped with Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines. Only the Pfizer vaccine is approved for children.

A noticeable addition to the process is the option of private pods, if you or your child desire to be vaccinated in a more private setting.

Just as with adult COVID-19 vaccines, there is a required 15-minute wait to check for possible side-effects, and the center is equipped with tables, crayons, and an activity sheet for the child to work on while they wait.

Vaccines are also available, or will be this week, for younger children at the Prince William Health Department’s Manassas Mall vaccine clinic and the Community Vaccine Center at Tysons Mall.

Arlington County Public Health is also offering child vaccines at Walter Reed Community Center and Arlington Mill Community Center. Clinics designated specifically for the 5-11 age group will be held Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 13 and 14, from 9 a.m.–5 p.m.

There are more than 700,000 children across Virginia in the 5-11 age group now eligible for COVID-19 vaccines, with more than 370,000 doses expected to be delivered to the state by Nov. 9, Dr. Danny Avula, Virginia’s vaccine coordinator, said Wednesday.

He said health officials are already seeing a lot of demand for the child vaccine, and he has no worries about supply.

“Really it will just be a matter of people being able to look at the website and make an appointment,” he said.

Paul Lara covers the military beat. Reach him at plara@insidenova.com

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(2) comments

Tom Manson

Correction - the VA site is working now for scheduling, with appointment availability starting 11/7

Tom Manson

The website shows no appointments available through end of year, but does have the child dosage listed as an option. Assume the site isn't working correctly yet.

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