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Covid shots urged for kids

The Minnesota Department of Health this week urged parents to get children vaccinated against Covid-19 and to make sure they and the entire family are up to date as the holidays approach.

The push comes just after the Food and Drug Administration authorized and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expanded recommendations for children age 6 months through 5 years to receive an updated vaccine dose to help increase protection against currently circulating variants. Vaccine doses are arriving in the state this month.

Children younger than 5 years first became eligible for Covid-19 vaccination in June. Vaccination rates for the youngest Minnesotans remain very low across the state. Less than 17 percent of these children have received at least one dose and less than 5 percent of children in the age group are up to date on vaccines. In addition, less than 10 percent of children age 5-17 years are up to date on vaccines, leaving them vulnerable to severe disease. Lower up to date vaccination rates for all age groups are concerning for health officials as immunity wanes and the virus continues to mutate.

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