COVID-19 Vaccine Available for Children & Expanded Eligibility for Boosters

November, 2021: Children ages 5 to 11 can now receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend all children 5–11 get the vaccine to protect against serious illness and help keep them healthy. Children are given two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and each dose is one-third the amount given to people ages 12 and older. The vaccine is effective and produced a similar immune response in children 5–11 as in older kids and adults ages 16–25. As with other routine vaccinations for children, the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine underwent a thorough testing and review process by the FDA and an independent scientific committee to ensure it is safe and effective for children.  

Additionally, COVID-19 vaccine booster shots are now available for more North Carolinians. Boosters have been authorized and recommended for individuals who are at high risk for serious illness or exposure. It is recommended that anyone 18 or older who was vaccinated more than 2 months ago with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine receive a booster dose. If you received the 2nd dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine more than 6 months ago, you are eligible if ONE of the following is true:  

  • You are 65 or older, or 
  • You live or work in a nursing home or long-term care residential facility 
  • You have a medical condition that puts you at high risk for severe illness  
  • You work in a high-risk profession, meaning you come into contact with a lot of people, and you don’t know their vaccination status  
  • You live or work in a place where many people live together  

Individuals can receive any brand of the COVID-19 vaccine for their booster shot, regardless of the brand they received for their first two shots. NCDHHS encourages you to speak with a doctor, nurse or pharmacist if you have questions about what booster is right for you. 

Eligible North Carolinians can receive the COVID-19 vaccine or booster shot for free, regardless of health insurance or immigration status. To find a vaccine provider near you, visit or call the North Carolina Vaccine Help Center at 888-675-4567 between 7am-7pm Monday-Friday or 8am-4pm Saturday-Sunday. You can also text your zip code to 438829 (822862 for Spanish) to receive 3 nearby vaccine provider locations.  

People who are homebound can schedule an at-home vaccination by calling 866-303-0026 or visiting  

For more information about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit 


Return to Blog