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Port Arthur Health Department hosts forum on COVID-19 vaccines for young children

Port Arthur Health Department Director Judith Smith says they already have the Pfizer vaccine and are expecting to receive the Moderna vaccine next week.

PORT ARTHUR, Texas — The Port Arthur Health Department held a forum on Thursday to help parents learn more about COVID-19 vaccines for kids.

On Saturday, June 18th, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention signed off on the vaccines for kids ages six months to five years.

Southeast Texas mom Debra Hayes had no doubt in her mind she wanted to get her daughter vaccinated.

“We wanna give her a fighting chance and you know the vaccine it doesn't prevent you from getting COVID, but it does help you as far as your symptoms are not as strong or severe," Hayes said.

Director of the Port Arthur Health Department Judith Smith says their department already has the Pfizer vaccine and are expecting to receive the Moderna vaccine next week. 

During the forum, health department officials discussed the side effects and the efficacy of vaccines. They stressed the idea that no vaccine is 100% effective, but it is the best defense from COVID-19 at any age.

"It's always gonna be the benefits versus the risk and that's where we are. Vaccinations is what we have right now to prevent those major complications from COVID," Smith said.

Hayes’ goal was to get her daughter vaccinated before the start of the new school year.

"With the younger children the dosage is not as strong as adults, so we feel comfortable getting her vaccinated," Hayes said.

Smith wants parents to closely monitor their kids for side effects and if something doesn't seem right, she says call a doctor immediately.

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