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Vaccinations for youth 12 and above expand on Maui

Maui Memorial Medical Center saw a “trickle” of youngsters coming in to get their Pfizer vaccine on Wednesday, just two days after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave the go ahead to expand the vaccine’s use for some youth.

Even though a formal announcement wasn’t made until later Wednesday that the hospital’s vaccination clinic is now open to those 12 years and older, officials “had a trickle come in and we accommodated,” said Maui Health spokeswoman Tracy Dallarda Wednesday afternoon.

But she added that minors need to be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

“An aunty won’t do, unfortunately,” Dallarda said.

On Wednesday the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that 12 to 15-year-olds receive the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. The recommendation comes two days after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expanded emergency use authorization for the vaccine to include people age 12 and older.

On Wednesday, Maui Health which operates Maui Memorial Medical Center, along with other vaccine clinics announced opening shots to those 12 years and older.

Laura Lott, Kaiser Permanente’s senior director of communications and public relations, said on Wednesday that call volume is “high across the state” for vaccine appointments for youth and that parents “are anxious to get their kids protected.”

Even Mayor Michael Victorino at his news conference Wednesday afternoon, encouraged families to get their children vaccinated.

“I recommend very highly that those who are in that age group, parents maybe also, to get vaccinated,” Victorino said. “It’s a good start to return to school, in-person school, as well as time for us to get together and spend time with our family and friends (and) to be able to travel.”

Health care providers are working with Maui County schools to organize vaccine clinics for students and the general public.

Minit Medical Urgent Care is administering vaccines through the weekend around the island for anyone 12 or older.

Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult or have a signed consent form by a parent or legal guardian.

One clinic is at King Kekaulike High School from 3 to 7 p.m. Friday in the school cafeteria. Another clinic at the campus will be held from 3 to 7 p.m. on May 24.

Minit Medical will also be administering the Pfizer vaccine for ages 12 and up at Baldwin High School from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. May 22 and 29 at the school gymnasium, along with a clinic at Maui High from 1 to 5 p.m. Friday at the Shine Matsui Athletic Center, and in Lahaina from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Lahaina Civic Center.

The Pfizer vaccine will be available for those 12 years old and older on Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Seabury Hall in Makawao. The public is asked to enter from Meha Road and park in the gym parking lot.

Appointments are required for all clinics. To register, visit minitmed.com. For more information, call Minit Medical at 667-6161.

Also, Molokai residents ages 12 and up can get vaccinated from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 24 at Molokai High School’s gym. Registration forms are available at the school, pre-registration is requested by May 20.

State Department of Education spokeswoman Nanea Kalani said that details for Hana and Lanai High Schools are still pending.

Kaiser Permanente will also begin accepting COVID-19 vaccination appointments for individuals 12 years of age and older starting today. To schedule an appointment, visit kp.org.

Kaiser will also be holding vaccination clinics at several high schools over the coming weeks for members and non-members. Parents should contact the school for an appointment.

All residents 12 years of age and older can also receive a vaccine at Maui Memorial Medical Center in the Main Lobby location. Those under 17 years old must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

Walk-ins are accepted during regular clinic hours, Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 to 5 p.m.

For those who would like to make an appointment, visit www.mauihealth.org/covidvaccine.

To date, Maui Health has administered over 54,000 vaccines, Dallarda said on Wednesday.

Maui Health’s Grand Wailea Resort vaccine clinic location remains open Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and also accepts walk-ins. This location administers the Moderna vaccine which is only approved for 18 years of age and older.

This location will be closed Friday and May 28.

* Dakota Grossman can be reached at dgrossman@mauinews.com.

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