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Children & COVID-19


COVID-19 vaccination is an important tool to help protect everyone 6 months and older from COVID-19 and its complications. Getting children and teens vaccinated against COVID-19 can help keep them from getting really sick if they do get COVID-19.

Kids ages 5 and older get 2 doses in their primary series. Those with weak immune systems get an additional dose at least 4 weeks later. They will still need booster shots as time passes, just like everyone else.

Is a COVID-19 Booster Shot the Same as an “Additional Dose”?

No. An additional dose is an extra dose of vaccine given as part of the primary series when a person is first vaccinated. Some people with weak immune systems might get a poor response from the primary series of the COVID-19 vaccine. This can include people who are being treated for cancer, have had an organ transplant, or take medicines that weaken the immune system. This added dose helps their immune system reach the same level of protection as in people with stronger immune systems.

Kids ages 6 months through 4 years with a weak immune system may need an additional dose. This depends on which vaccine they get:

  • Kids who get the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine get 3 doses in their primary series. This is true for both healthy kids as well as those with weak immune systems. No additional doses are needed for this group.
  • Kids who get the Moderna vaccine get 2 doses in their primary series. Kids with weak immune systems get an additional dose at least 4 weeks later.

Booster shots are not recommended for this age group.

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