Patient Education

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COVID-19 (coronavirus 2019, 5y-11y) vaccine, Pfizer

Pronunciation: KOE vid-19 koe ROE na vye rus VAX een

Brand: Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 (5y-11y) Vaccine PF

What is the most important information I should know about this vaccine?

Becoming infected with COVID-19 is much more dangerous to your child's health than receiving this vaccine.

What is the COVID-19 vaccine?

COVID-19 is a serious disease caused by a coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2). COVID-19 is spread from person to person through the air.

COVID-19 can affect the lungs or other organs. Symptoms may be mild or serious and include fever, chills, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, tiredness, body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, runny or stuffy nose, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

The COVID-19 vaccine is used to help prevent severe disease and death from COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has fully approved the Pfizer vaccine for use in people who are at least 16 years old.

The FDA has authorized emergency use of the Pfizer vaccine in people who are 6 months to 15 years old.

COVID-19 vaccine does not contain coronavirus and cannot give your child COVID-19. This vaccine will not treat an active COVID-19 infection.

Like any vaccine, COVID-19 vaccine may not provide protection in every person.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving this vaccine?

Your child should not receive this vaccine if he or she has ever had a severe allergic reaction to a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

If your child is infected with COVID-19, is waiting for testing results, or is exposed to someone infected with COVID-19: Your child may not be able to receive this vaccine until he or she has no symptoms and/or his/her required quarantine period has ended. Receiving this vaccine will not make your child less contagious to other people if he or she is infected with COVID-19 but has no symptoms.

If your child had COVID-19 and were treated with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma: Your child should wait 90 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Ask the doctor if you are unsure about any COVID-19 treatments your child received.

Tell the vaccination provider if:

  • your child has a fever;
  • your child has any allergies;
  • your child has had inflammation in or around the heart (myocarditis or pericarditis);
  • your child has bleeding problems, or if he or she uses a blood thinner (warfarin, Coumadin, Jantoven);
  • your child has a weak immune system caused by disease or by using certain medicine;
  • your child has received any other COVID-19 vaccine; or
  • your child has fainted after receiving an injection.

How is this vaccine given?

Read all vaccine information sheets provided to you.

The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is given as an injection (shot) into a muscle, in a series of 2 shots given 3 to 8 weeks apart.

The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is fully approved for people at least 16 years old. The Pfizer vaccine is authorized for emergency use in people who are 6 months to 15 years old.

The Pfizer vaccine is also authorized for emergency use in a series of 3 shots for people 6 months and older who have received an organ transplant or have certain types of immunosuppression. The first 2 shots are given 3 to 8 weeks apart and the third shot is given 4 to 8 weeks after the second shot.

The doctor or vaccination provider will determine whether your child needs a booster dose.

You will receive a reminder card showing the date and type of each injection. Take this card with you each time your child receives a COVID-19 vaccine.

Keep using infection control methods when you are in public or around others who may not have been vaccinated. This includes social distancing, hand-washing, using protective face covering, disinfecting surfaces you touch a lot, and not sharing personal items with others.

Receiving a COVID-19 vaccine will not cause your child to test positive on a coronavirus test. However, once your child's body develops immunity to COVID-19, he or she could test positive on an antibody test (a test to detect immunity in your body from previous exposure to coronavirus).

It is not known how long this vaccine will protect your child from infection with COVID-19. It also is not known how long immunity will last in a person who's been infected with and recovered from COVID-19. COVID-19 vaccine is still being studied and all of its risks are not yet known. Updated federal public health recommendations may be found at

What happens if I miss a dose?

Be sure your child receives all recommended doses of COVID-19 vaccine or he or she may not be fully protected. Contact the vaccination provider or health department if your child misses his/her second dose.

What happens if I overdose?

An overdose of this vaccine is unlikely to occur.

What should I avoid while receiving this vaccine?

Avoid receiving other vaccines without first seeking medical advice.

What are the possible side effects of this vaccine?

Get emergency medical help if your child has signs of an allergic reaction: hives, rash; dizziness, weakness, fast heartbeats; difficult breathing; swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat.

The vaccination provider may want to watch your child for a short time after the shot, to make sure he or she doesn't have an allergic reaction. Your child will be treated quickly if he or she has a reaction right after receiving the vaccine.

Your child should not receive this vaccine again if the first shot caused an allergic reaction. The doctor or vaccination provider will determine if he or she can safely receive another COVID-19 vaccine.

Not all possible side effects are known. Becoming infected with COVID-19 is much more dangerous to your child's health than receiving this vaccine.

Some people receiving this vaccine had inflammation of the heart muscle or the lining around the heart within a few days after receiving this vaccine, but the risk of this side effect is very low. Seek medical attention right away if your child has:

  • chest pain;
  • shortness of breath; or
  • fast or pounding heartbeats or fluttering in the chest.

Common side effects may include:

  • fever, chills, swollen glands, not feeling well;
  • pain, redness, or swelling where the shot was given;
  • feeling tired; or
  • headache, muscle pain, joint pain.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call the doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report vaccine side effects to the US Department of Health and Human Services at 1-800-822-7967.

You may also use a smartphone-based program called V-safe to communicate with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about any health problems your child has after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine:

What other drugs will affect this vaccine?

Before receiving this vaccine, tell the vaccination provider about all other vaccines your child has received and all medicines he or she uses. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

Where can I get more information?

The vaccination provider, pharmacist, or doctor can provide more information about this vaccine. Additional information is available from your local health department or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2022 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 11.01. Revision date: 9/14/2022.

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