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Parents unwilling to vaccinate young children over side effects

Many parents are not taking their children to be vaccinated because they are concerned over the possible side effects, said Health Services Department Director-General Suwanchai Wattanayingcharoenchai today (Sunday), citing the results of an opinion survey conducted by the department.

The survey, on the topic “Parents’ confidence in vaccinationsfor children aged 5-11”, was conducted between April 22nd and May 11th.

54.1% of children, aged 5-11, have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine and are about to receive their second.

The poll shows that 77.2% of parents are worried that their children may develop serious side effects. 55.3% are not confident in the effectiveness and safety of the vaccines and 37% are concerned that children who are not healthy, or who have underlying diseases, may develop serious side effects.

Dr. Suwanchai said, however, that the vaccines generate the immunity that will protect young children from developing serious, sometime grave symptoms from COVID-19 infection and will enable children to resume on-site study at schools.

He pleaded with parents, who still have doubts about the vaccines, to take their children for inoculation and offered some advice.

He said, if the child is sick, has a fever or is fatigued, they should be treated first. Children who have serious underlying diseases or are in an unstable condition should be assessed by a doctor before vaccination.

The most common post-vaccination symptoms include pain or swelling at injection site, headache and fatigue, which is why those inoculated have to wait at the vaccination site, to monitor their symptoms, for at least 30 minutes.

Dr. Suwanchai also said that most of the post-vaccination symptoms can be reduced with medications and that theyshould get adequate rest for a week after the inoculation.

The Thai Food and Drug Administration has recently approved the extended use of Moderna’s Spikevax forchildren aged 6 and up. 

Two doses of 0.25ml, which is half the dosage for adults, are recommended for children aged 6 to 11, with a four-week interval between the first and second doses.

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