SAN ANTONIO – Thousands of adolescents in San Antonio have already received the COVID-19 vaccine and there’s a big push to get more teens vaccinated.
Dr. Joseph B. Cantey, associate professor of pediatrics at UT Health San Antonio, said the vaccine is safe for teens.
“The efficacy data for children 12 to 16 looks really good. We’ve seen a in excess of 90% protection from infection. Ninety nine percent protection from hospitalization compared to unvaccinated teenagers,” Cantey said.
Cantey said its critical that data continues to be released about the side effects of the vaccine and the risks of getting COVID-19 in this age group.
“We need to continue to do a good job of being transparent with the data, to be honest about the potential side effects of the vaccine, like muscle soreness and in very, very rare cases,the heart inflammation.But we need to be equally honest about the risks of getting the COVID infection itself, which is hospitalization, in some cases death,” Cantey said.
Metro Health said as of Aug. 26, 57% of eligible adolescents ages 12-15 in San Antonio have received at least one dose of the COVID 19 vaccine and 38% have been fully vaccinated.
A local teen who participated in a COVID-19 vaccine trial hopes her story can help others.
“I am really sad to see, like other kids, getting sick because of COVID. I just think that maybe if they had been vaccinated before then this could have been prevented,” said Hannah Ross, a vaccine trial participant.
Hannah was 14 years old when she participated in the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine trial.
“There were no guarantees and, so, I was really proud of her for wanting to step up and be part of the trial, to take a risk, to be part of the solution,” said Judy Ross, Hannah’s mother.
The two of them didn’t know at the time of the trial that Hannah got the vaccine and not a placebo.
“The symptoms I got were like a fever and chills and body aches,” Hannah said.
Hannah said she is feeling great today and said there’s nothing to be scared of.
“The first and second days after the doses might be a little like rough, but after that, then you’re good to go,” she said.