Rite Aid expands COVID-19 vaccine eligibility age following updated guidance from CDC


Shown is a sign outside a Rite-Aid pharmacy in Steelton, Pa., Friday, March 5, 2021. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Rite Aid is expanding its eligibility age for the COVID-19 vaccine following the latest guidance from the CDC.

Starting Wednesday, May 12, Rite Aid will administer COVID-19 vaccines to anyone 12 or older at all locations in Virginia offering the Pfizer vaccine. 

Guardians for individuals under 18 can now schedule appointments using the Rite Aid scheduling tool here.

The Food and Drug Administration approved the vaccine for emergency use authorization on Monday but before the vaccine could be distributed it also needed an endorsement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A CDC panel voted to back use of the vaccine for the 12 to 15 age group on Wednesday afternoon.

Children will not be able to go get their vaccination alone. They must be accompanied by either a parent, guardian or someone acting “in loco parentis.” This means if a child wanted to get vaccinated at a school event, a teacher can help fulfill consent requirements. If a child is receiving their vaccine at a clinic, community vaccination center, pharmacy or other provider, VDH encourages families to check the consent requirements before going.

Adults will be asked for the child’s birthday at any of the health-department-run vaccination events, other providers may require a birth certificate or other form of identification.

Dr. Danny Avula, Virginia’s vaccine coordinator, believes vaccinating children and teens will be key in reaching herd immunity.

“We will only move forward as a state if the CDC says ‘yes, we agree with the advisory committee and we’re going to move forward,’” said Avula. “The data looks really good at this point.”

To find the nearest Rite Aid location near you, click here.

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