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The Golisano Children’s Hospital Mobile Pediatric Vaccination Clinic provides hope and access to families in our community

From Niki Shimko, Supervisor for the Pediatric Critical Care Transport Team at Golisano and Leader of the Mobile Vaccination Clinic.

It was a much awaited day for so many families in Southwest Florida.

On October 29, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in 5-11 year-olds and four days later, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially recommended it for that age group.

Parents around the country and right here in our region breathed a huge sigh of relief because they could finally begin vaccinating their young children who fell into this age bracket.

At Golisano Children’s Hospital, we want to make sure that all the children and families we serve have access to this potentially life-saving vaccine.

Back in late May, we launched our Golisano Children’s Hospital Mobile Pediatric Vaccination Clinic to vaccinate those 12 years-old and older. We travel throughout the Southwest Florida community, making stops in Immokalee, Lehigh Acres, Marco Island, Fort Myers, Cape Coral and Port Charlotte, to vaccinate those who may otherwise not have access to the COVID-19 vaccine due to lack of transportation and other barriers.

Through the mobile clinic, we’ve provided more than 1,100 COVID-19 vaccines to children and an additional 750 to their adult family members.

Once we could begin vaccinating the 5-11 year olds, we held a special kick-off event at Golisano, tailored toward young children. The response we had was absolutely amazing. Before we even opened the event, there was a line of kids with their families, waiting to be vaccinated for COVID-19. That day, we were able to vaccinate 234 kids.

If you haven’t yet vaccinated your child age 5 years-old and older or yourself, please do so as soon as possible. The mobile clinic is out in Southwest Florida, offering the COVID-19 vaccine to children in the newly-approved age group, and anyone else who is eligible.

Our upcoming stops include:

  • Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2-5 p.m., MacKoul Pediatrics, 206 SE 16th Place, Cape Coral
  • Monday, Nov. 29, 2-6 p.m., Guadalupe Center- Monaghan Campus, 1170 Harvest Drive, Immokalee
  • Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2-5 p.m., LPG Pediatrics Cape Coral, 650 Del Prado Blvd. Suite 107,
    Cape Coral
  • Thursday, Dec. 2, 2-5 p.m., MacKoul Pediatrics, 206 SE 16th Place, Cape Coral

The mobile clinic is walk-up only, and there is no cost for the vaccine. A parent or authorized guardian must accompany a minor for vaccination. The second dose will also take place at the same location or one nearby.

I encourage you to come, if you haven’t already.

The vaccine is safe and effective, and it’s the best tool we have to fight COVID-19.