COVID-19 vaccine information for children ages 6 months to 4 years
Looking for information specific to children ages 5 to 11? Visit our COVID-19 vaccines for children ages 5 to 11 page.
Looking for information specific to youth ages 12 to 17? Visit our COVID-19 vaccines for youth ages 12 to 17 page.
Looking for general information on COVID-19 vaccines? Visit our COVID-19 vaccines page.
- COVID-19 vaccines are safe for young children and provide good protection against severe illness and hospitalization due to COVID-19.
- Most children with COVID-19 have mild disease or no symptoms at all; however, some children get severe disease and need to be hospitalized.
- The Moderna vaccine is approved for children 6 months to 5 years of age and the Pfizer vaccine is approved for children 6 months to 4 years of age.
- In BC, children 6 months to 4 years of age are routinely offered the Moderna vaccine.
- Young children get a smaller dose of the same vaccine used for youth and adults.
- Side effects of COVID-19 vaccines are usually mild. Serious side effects are very rare.
- It is much safer to get the vaccine than to get COVID-19.
Why should my young child get the COVID-19 vaccine?
- Can get a severe lung infection and heart issues like myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle). Myocarditis can occur when a virus, such as the common cold, influenza (flu) or SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) infects the body.
- Are at risk of developing a serious but rare condition called multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C). MIS-C is caused by an exaggerated immune response, leading to severe widespread inflammation. It can happen several weeks after infection and usually requires hospitalization. Most children in Canada who have had this condition have fully recovered with treatment.
- While the evidence is limited in children younger than 5, COVID-19 infection may lead to post-COVID condition or "long COVID." This is where people feel sick for weeks or months after the initial illness.
Read why BC Children’s Hospital doctors recommend the COVID-19 vaccine.
What vaccines are available for children 6 months - 4 years of age?
How many doses of vaccine does my child need?
What is the dosage for young children?
Young children get a smaller dose of the same vaccine used for youth and adults. Young children only need a small dose of vaccine to develop a similar level of protection against serious illness as adults.
The Moderna vaccine for children 6 months to 5 years of age is a 25 microgram dose, which is a quarter of the dosage adults get. The Pfizer vaccine for children 6 months to 4 years of age is a 3 microgram dose, which is one-tenth the dosage adults get.
Should my child get vaccinated if they have already had COVID-19?
Are COVID-19 vaccines safe for young children?
What are the side effects of COVID-19 vaccines in young children?
- Redness, soreness, and swelling at the injection site.
- More general symptoms such as chills, fatigue, joint pain, headache, mild fever, and muscle aches.
Should I be concerned about myocarditis side effects in this age group?
Have a positive vaccination experience
- COVID-19 vaccines (children 6 mos - 4 yrs) frequently asked questions.
- COVID-19 vaccines (children 5 - 11 yrs) frequently asked questions.
- Vaccines for children: COVID-19 (Government of Canada).
Colouring pages: COVID-19 vaccine superhero
Jesse is going to get a COVID-19 vaccine and is a little nervous. Jesse brought a favourite toy and used belly breathing to feel calm. There was a tiny pinch on the arm, and it was over. That was easy! Jesse is now a COVID-19 vaccine superhero!
Print Jesse's story as a colouring page:
Print and colour your own COVID-19 vaccine hero badge!