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CHEO's first COVID-19 vaccination clinic for kids made for a busy weekend

The children's hospital saw a little over 300 kids each day during its first full weekend of vaccine administration.
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CHEO (Photo/Dani-Elle Dubé)

It was a non-stop weekend for CHEO’s Kids Come First COVID vaccine clinic, as staff vaccinated a little over 300 kids a day against the virus.

The clinic opened on Friday, November 26, and according to Stephanie Carter, director of ambulatory care at CHEO, it's been successful.

“It’s going so great,” she told CityNews on Saturday. “We had over 600 kids this weekend and we’ll be booking right through until December.”

The team even got a little help for those who needed extra support.

On hand was everyone’s favourite therapeutic clown Molly Penny, as well as child life experts and the autism services team for those on the spectrum.

“It’s all over the place — some [children] are anxious and nervous, some are excited. Certainly, we’re happy to see many happy parents. I think this has come with relief for so many to actually to have their five- to 11-year-olds vaccinated,” Carter said.

Children getting a vaccination don’t need to be a patient of CHEO, Carter explained. What they need to do, however, is pre-register through the CHEO website for an appointment.

According to the CHEO website, the clinics at the children’s hospital are for kids who cannot attend a community vaccination clinic for various reasons. 

Reasons a child may have difficulty receiving their vaccination in the community:

  • Being immunocompromised
  • Having medical complexities or technology dependency
  • Having a condition that makes it challenging to be in a crowd
  • Other medical reasons that are not listed above, but make it challenging for the child to be vaccinated in the community

The clinic will be open to eligible children and their household members. 

“It’s important for us and we’re very happy to be able to provide this support because it’s so important for children to get vaccinated, to protect themselves, their families and communities at large,” Carter added.

For more information on CHEO’s vaccination clinic, visit

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