OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — For many parents, it’s a big decision whether or not to vaccinate their children. KMTV 3 News Now is speaking to local experts about the COVID-19 vaccine so that Nebraska and Iowa residents can make fact-based decisions about their family’s health.
Boystown pediatrician, Dr. Michael Dawson explains the FDA’s decision to approve emergency authorization for the Pfizer vaccine and why the CDC recommends the vaccine for teens.
He told us the vaccine is safe for children as young as 12 and he explained what makes a vaccine like Pfizer's so effective when it comes to fighting COVID-19.
“The genetic material gets transcribed to produce just that spike protein, it leaves that cell and your immune system recognizes it and says 'Intruder alert! Intruder alert!' learns how to fight it, then it defends you against it any time it recognizes that spike protein and sees it in the future. So instead of seeing the entire virus, you're just seeing that little part of it,” said Dawson.
He stressed that the testing of the vaccine safety hasn't been compromised in any way.
Dr. Dawson spoke with Digital Content Manager, Katrina Markel, on Wednesday. In our extended interview, he dispels myths about the vaccine and explains the technology behind its development.
He stressed that the vaccine isn't a live virus, it doesn't change a patient's DNA or affect fertility. Dawson also said he's comfortable with the level of rigor applied to testing the vaccine for teenagers.
Starting Friday, the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department will offer Pfizer doses to a new group — teens between the ages of 12 and 15 years of age.
The first two clinics will be at Pinnacle Bank Arena this Friday and Saturday. Parents or guardians will need to schedule an appointment with the Lincoln-Lancaster Health Department.