‘Two little pokes and I’m done’: Two Spokane kids are eager to get COVID-19 vaccine

SPOKANE, Wash. — Children between 12 and 15-years-old are one step closer to getting a COVID-19 vaccine. The FDA is expected to give Pfizer the green light and make its vaccine available to more children. All of this could happen in a matter of days.

When word about the potential approval was announced Monday afternoon, 14-year-old Ramona Benson said she was excited.

“I was glowing inside — it’s just a huge wave of relief swept over me and I don’t have to worry about this for much longer,” Benson said.

Her father, Kevin Benson, is fully vaccinated. He said he is happy to see this next step in the fight against COVID-19.

“Having our family being vaccinated is the fastest way to get back to as much normal as we can,” he explained.

A federal vaccine advisory committee needs to discuss the recommendation first. If the emergency use is expanded by the FDA and the CDC adopts the recommendation, more shots can go into more arms shortly after. In March, Pfizer said an early report of a vaccine study showed there were no COVID-19 cases among vaccinated kids between 12 and 15. Children had side effects to getting the shot — similar to young adults.

Kevin said his family thought about the risks and rewards.

“We think the risks of contracting COVID are more than the risks of having our kids get vaccinated,” he said.

The father of two also said the vaccine will allow them to do more, per CDC guidelines.

Ramona’s sister, 12-year-old Eloise, said she is ready to have some normalcy back, like seeing her friends’ faces.

“I just thought two little pokes and I’m done,” she said. “They may be far away from each other, but two little pokes and I’m done.”

The girls have asked their parents some questions about the vaccines. Both Ramona and Eloise said they trust the science and encourage others to do the same so we can end this pandemic.

“The sooner this pandemic is over, the better it’ll be for everybody,” Ramona said.

“Shots are scary, but it’ll be over soon and it’ll help a lot of other people and yourself,” Eloise said.

Moderna is also working on making its vaccine available to younger people. Results from a study for kids between 12 and 17-years-old are expected to come out by the middle of this year.

Currently, Pfizer vaccines can go to people 16 and older. Moderna and Johnson & Johnson can go to anyone 18 and older.

RELATED: FDA to authorize Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine for 12-to-15-year-olds by early next week, official says

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