Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines are now available to children ages 5 and up in the U.S. Here’s what parents and kids need to know about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine, the possible side effects, and the benefits of getting vaccinated.

If children don’t frequently experience severe illness with COVID-19, why do they need a COVID-19 vaccine?

A COVID-19 vaccine can prevent your child from getting and spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.

If your child gets COVID-19, a COVID-19 vaccine could prevent him or her from becoming severely ill or experiencing short-term or long-term complications. Children with other health conditions, such as obesity, diabetes and asthma, might be at higher risk of serious illness with COVID-19.

Getting a COVID-19 vaccine can also help keep your child in school and more safely have playdates and participate in sports and other group activities.

What COVID-19 vaccines