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Local pediatrician already has long waitlist for children’s COVID-19 vaccine

Published: Nov. 4, 2021 at 10:24 PM CDT|Updated: Nov. 4, 2021 at 11:13 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - One local pediatrician said phones are ringing off the hook as parents are being put on waitlists for the children’s COVID-19 vaccine.

Dr. Max Hale with Birmingham Pediatric Associates said in just two days, they have already added more than 200 parents to a waitlist for the shot.

“We’ve gotten a lot of phone calls,” Hale said. “A dozen calls an hour. I’m sure more than that sometimes. We have a lot of families who have been really apprehensive and really anticipating this availability. We are glad it’s finally here.”

Hale said they’ve pre-ordered a few hundred doses of the vaccine, but until it comes in, they’ll keep adding names to the waitlist.

“We are hoping to have it by the first part of next week,” he said. “If we do, we will start scheduling time slots in the afternoon to complete those dosings.”

He said on weekdays, they’ll have about 12 spots open a day, but to make it easier on parents, they’ll also give shots on Saturdays.

“In the first couple weeks of availability for this age group, there is going to be that much demand that we will need to be here at least one extra day to be able to provide it to people in a timely fashion,” Hale said.

While many of his patients are ready to roll up their sleeves now, Hale said a lot of parents still have questions.

“Most people just want to know our true opinions on it,” Hale said. “How we feel about it and do we think it is appropriate for their kids when it is available.”

Hale said his advice is to get the shot.

“For five to 11, we are very comfortable with it’s use and we are more than happy to provide it,” Hale said.

Dr. Hale said many parents are also signing up to get their kids flu shots at the same time. He said it is safe to knock them all out at once.

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