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Vaccine appointments for 12 to 15- year- olds now open in the Carolinas

Parents have to give consent before the shot is administered to the child.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Children ages 12 to 15-years-old  are now eligible to get Pfizer’s double dose COVID -19 vaccine.

CVS, Walgreens and Novant Health  are all accepting walk-in and same day vaccine appointments.

Novant Health appointments begin at 3 pm Thursday.

WCNC Charlotte has heard from many parents who’ve asked about consent protocol.

In both North and South Carolina, parents have to give permission for their child to get the shot by signing a consent form, which will be given to you by the vaccine provider.

At Walgreens, parents have to be present at the appointment.

Health experts are reminding families who chose to get the shot that the second dose is crucial to immunity.

Another big reminder-- Dr. Brannon Traxler with South Carolina’s health department say side effects in adults and children alike are normal and expected.

Soreness in the arm, headache, tiredness, slight fever, health experts  say those are all common after the vaccine.

Dr.  Traxler says  side effects are a good sign.

“Side effects are usually temporary and could mean that the vaccine is working," said Dr. Traxler.

The CDC and AAP provide pediatricians with safety information, urging parents to talk to their trusted care providers.

Dr. Samira brown, an Atlanta-based pediatrician agrees.

"We can talk them through what the side effects are, what we know, what we don't know, and it's okay to be hesitant," said Dr. Brown. "It's okay to have those questions."

Though their infection rates are much lower than adults, since the start of the pandemic,  there have been  more than one and half million confirmed cases in children ages 12 to 17.  More than 13,000 children have been hospitalized.

With doctors promising parents the vaccine is safe and highly effective, now,   studies involving children 6 months to 11 years old are underway.

By the end of the year,  nearly all Americans will have a vaccine, if they decide to take it.