BLOOMINGDALE, Ill. (WLS) — As the first round of COVID-19 vaccinations for the last group to get approval, infants, toddlers and preschoolers, began in the Chicago area, locations in the suburbs and the city are helping get shots into little arms.

Tears from a little one were hard to watch. But in this case, tears brought relief to many parents.

“Very happy and a little sad that my wife didn’t take her to this instead of me,” said Michael Munie, a parent. “She’s our youngest daughter. We have two older ones. They are already vaccinated and boosted and we’ve just been waiting on her.”

Now, the wait is finally over.

“It’s a really exciting time for both parents and pediatricians,” said La Rabida Children’s Hospital Chief Medical Officer Dr. Sarah Hoehn.

SEE ALSO | ‘We have to protect them’: Some determined to get kids under 5 vaccinated, others remain hesitant

On Monday morning, some parents wasted no time.

“I am just happy that we’re able to put an end to this chapter,” said Regan Berg. “For us, it was an easy decision.”

La Rabida Hospital in Chicago serves children with special medical needs. The hospital is now awaiting its first shipment to vaccinate its most vulnerable patients.

“We’ve underestimated some of the risks in terms of how sick kids potentially can get from it,” Hoehn said. “They’re at much higher risk than others who are getting more severe effects of COVID.”

No matter the level of risk, for most parents, any risk for their children is one risk too many.

“There’s no magic bullet, but it’s the right thing to do, so I’m grateful we got to this stage,” Munie said.

That’s why a small pharmacy and clinic in Bloomingdale has been getting a lot of attention on social media.

Many parents said they drove there after finding the location on parent Facebook groups or on Twitter. The staff there said since they’ve opened, they’ve seen picnics in the parking lot and families from as far as Peoria and across state lines from Wisconsin.

Pharmacies like Rana-Reagan in Bloomingdale got their first shipments of the vaccine for younger children early Monday morning. But before the vaccines even arrived at 10:45 a.m., the suburban clinic’s vaccine coordinator said there were already families waiting in the parking lot before the pharmacy opened, ready to wait as long as they needed to.

“They were actually ready to wait to wait until 3 p.m., 4 p.m., they said,” said Rana-Reagan Pharmacy Vaccine Coordinator Jigna Gandhi. “They had a cute tent, their lunches, snacks, toys and they were just camping out in the car and wait.”

Gandhi said as soon as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gave their green light for children as young as 6 months to get the vaccine, her phone rang non-stop, taking more than 700 calls this past weekend and hundreds more Monday morning. The response so overwhelming and appreciated, the pharmacy doubled their staff Monday.

They even extended their hours. This clinic normally would have closed about 5:30 p.m., but after getting the enormous response, they planned to stay open a couple hours longer.

Parents have the option of choosing between either Pfizer or Moderna, The Food and Drug Administration said the differences between the two are less than the risks of not getting vaccinated.

The Chicago Department of Public Health recommends families first reach out to their pediatrician or family medical provider to see if appointments are available.

But the city is also planning vaccination clinics with three Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL) Blue Door Neighborhood Center sites in the coming weeks, and the at-home vaccinations program will start vaccinating younger kids this Saturday.

Reservations are recommended, but walk-ins are also accepted. Visit the links below to view the schedule for each location and register.

Morgan Park – 11840 S. Marshfield Ave.: June 28, July 14, July 23, July 26, Aug. 11, Aug. 20, Sept. 8, Oct. 6
Pullman – 756 E. 111th St.: June 30, July 13, July 16, July 28, Aug. 4, Aug. 10, Aug. 13, Sept. 1
South Lawndale – 2551 W. Cermak Road: July 1, July 29, Aug. 3, Aug. 27, Aug. 31, Sept. 6, Sept. 24, Oct. 4

CDPH will host family vaccination clinics at City Colleges of Chicago. These events will offer Pfizer and Moderna for children 6 months through 4 years old, as well as Pfizer vaccines and booster doses to all Chicagoans. All clinics will be open 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Registration is recommended and is available at the links below. Walk-ins will be accommodated as space allows.

– June 25 – Kennedy-King College, 6301 S. Halsted St.
– July 2 – Richard J. Daley College, 7500 S. Pulaski Road, Wilbur Wright College, 4300 N. Narragansett Ave.
– July 9 – Malcolm X College, 1900 W. Jackson Blvd., Truman College, 1145 W. Wilson Ave.
– July 23 – Kennedy-King College
– July 30 – Richard J. Daley College and Wilbur Wright College
– Aug. 6 – Malcolm X College and Truman College
– Aug. 20 – Kennedy-King College
– Aug. 27 – Richard J. Daley College and Wilbur Wright College
– Sept. 3 – Malcolm X College and Truman College

Family vaccination clinics at Arturo Velasquez Institute in partnership with Alivio Medical Center five days a week (Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays-Saturdays) at 2800 S. Western Ave. Walk-ins welcome. Register online or by phone at 773-254-1400.

Starting Saturday, CDPH’s in-home vaccination program, Protect Chicago At Home, will expand to offer Pfizer vaccine for anyone 6 months or older. Up to 10 people can be vaccinated at a time, offering a great opportunity for the entire family to get up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccinations. Make an at-home appointment at or by calling 312-746-4835.

Standing CDPH immunization clinics will also offer Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for anyone 6 months and up by appointment only. This includes:
– Uptown WIC, 845 W. Wilson Ave., 2nd Level (call 312-742-3227 for an appointment)
– Greater Lawn WIC, 4150 W. 55th St. (call 312-745-1477 for an appointment)

Chicago Public Schools’ regional vaccination clinics and mobile vaccination events will resume in early July when CPS schools open for summer programming and will offer the vaccine for children under 5. Some of CPS’ School Based Health centers will also be offering vaccines to children under 5. Information on specific opportunities will be available in the coming weeks and will be announced by CPS. Check for more information and vaccine opportunities for CPS families. If a CPS family needs assistance with locating a Medical Home, they may also call the Healthy CPS Hotline at 773-553-KIDS (5437) for assistance.

Starting next week, some CDPH-sponsored community events will offer pediatric vaccinations for children under 5. For the calendar of community events, visit

Select children’s hospitals will host pediatric vaccine events – check hospital websites for dates and more information.

For those who need help finding a nearby site, is a free, online service that you can use to search for pharmacies and providers that offer vaccination. Residents can also call the city’s COVID-19 call center at 312-746-4835.

Parents must accompany children getting their vaccine. Learn more at

Copyright © 2022 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.

Post source: Abc7chicago

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