Equity in Childhood COVID-19 Vaccination

CDC recommends everyone ages 5 years and older get a COVID-19 vaccine to help protect against COVID-19

Illustration of eight children of different races and genders wearing "I got my COVID-19 vaccine" sticker.

COVID-19 vaccine equity is when all people who are eligible ─ including children ─ have fair and just access to COVID-19 vaccination. Expanding the vaccination recommendation to children ages 5 through 11 years now paves the way for 28 million more children to receive the vaccine.

We know some children will face barriers to receiving COVID-19 vaccines. On this page, learn what work is currently being done and get resources to improve vaccine access in your community.

How CDC is Helping Get COVID-19 Vaccines to Children
Illustration of eight children of different races and genders wearing "I got my COVID-19 vaccine" sticker.
  • Making sure vaccines are available in convenient places and at different times of the day and evening.
  • Tracking vaccination trends among children of different ages, genders, racial and ethnic groups, and geographic regions to rapidly identify places where more efforts are needed.
  • Sharing health information that is culturally and linguistically appropriate through trusted messengers, such as faith-based and community leaders.
  • Funding partners working to build vaccine confidence by offering vaccines and communicating with parents in community spaces like community clinics, libraries, and children’s museums.
  • Funding Prevention Research Centers to implement and evaluate programs training pediatric primary care professionals to communicate with parents about COVID-19 vaccination and empower youth to serve as COVID-19 vaccine ambassadorsexternal icon with their peers.
What Communities Can Do to Improve Equity in Childhood Vaccination
Partner with community providers to administer COVID-19 vaccines to children.
  • Pediatricians are often the ones who vaccinate children, and many do this through the federally funded Vaccines for Children (VFC) program. However, pediatricians aren’t not the only providers who can vaccinate children.
  • In many areas, pharmacies and community clinics—such as Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs)external icon, rural health clinics, and community health centers—also administer vaccines to children, and some of these are also VFC providers.​
  • Many schools and school districts partner with health departments, pharmacies, and other healthcare providers to hold vaccine clinics in schools to vaccinate children and families of schoolchildren who may not otherwise have access.
  • Community organizations, including faith-based organizations, can serve as an informational resource to help families find community-based vaccination sites.
Children’s Vaccine Equity in Action

Spotlight on Community Health Initiatives

Families receiving a COVID-19 vaccine for eligible children at the Kids Mobile Medical Clinic/Ronald McDonald Care Mobile.

Families arriving to receive a COVID-19 vaccine for eligible children at the Kids Mobile Medical Clinic/Ronald McDonald Care Mobile. Source: MedStar Healthexternal icon

In medically underserved communities of Washington, DC, MedStar Health is taking COVID-19 vaccines “on the road” ─ making sure the newest group of eligible children have easy access to the lifesaving vaccines.

Children ages 5 through 11 years are now getting vaccinated at pediatric offices and mobile clinics across these communities.

Virtual Town Halls for Parents banner with an image of a family.

Source: Montgomery County Immunization Coalition, Pennsylvania

The Montgomery County Immunization Coalitionexternal icon (MCIC) in Pennsylvania arranged tailored town halls on COVID-19 vaccines for children ages 5 through 11 years for Black/African American, Asian American, and Hispanic/Latino parents, with content delivered in English and Spanish.

MCIC also created an educational flyer on pediatric COVID-19 vaccination available in Chineseexternal icon, Englishexternal icon, Koreanexternal icon, Spanishexternal icon, and Vietnameseexternal icon.

Resources to Increase Children’s COVID-19 Vaccine Access

The following resources can help providers and organizations increase children’s COVID-19 vaccine access within their communities.

Racial and Ethnic Minority Groups

People Experiencing Homelessness

Community Engagement

​Health Equity

Vaccine Confidence

Setting Up COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics

General Information

Page last reviewed: December 28, 2021, 02:17 PM