New York

Vaccinations for children under 5 are expected to begin in New York City.

Families in New York City were preparing to vaccinate children younger than 5 against Covid-19 on Wednesday as the first doses were expected to become available after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention endorsed the vaccines over the weekend.

In a city that was once the epicenter of the Covid pandemic, many parents have been eager to vaccinate the last age group still awaiting shots, the youngest children, and moved quickly to book appointments.

Some health providers planned to start offering vaccines to young children on Wednesday, including pharmacies like Walgreens, which serve children 3 and older. The city’s 10 vaccine hubs, which serve children 6 months and older, were also expected to open, and appointments were available on the city’s “Vaccine Finder” website.

Mr. Adams, a Democrat who took office in January, said that New Yorkers were doing the right things to contain the virus, including getting vaccinated, testing and wearing masks, and he said that vaccinating children under 5 was the next step.

“We know there remains no greater defense against this virus than vaccination, which is why we’re pleased that young children are now eligible for the protection they deserve, and can’t wait to begin under-5 vaccination,” Mr. Adams said in a statement on Tuesday.

Jami Wolf, the mother of a 7-year-old son and a 4-year-old daughter who lives in South Slope in Brooklyn, said she was “extremely excited” about the arrival of vaccines for young children.

“We’ve been waiting for this for as long as the pandemic has started,” she said. “I was practically first in line when they rolled out the vaccines for the 5- to 12-year-olds, and I plan to be first in line, so to speak, for this rollout too.”

But on Tuesday, Ms. Wolf had a difficult time finding an appointment for before the weekend.

“It’s frustrating — it’s aggravating,” she said.

The mayor’s office said that appointments would be available for the city’s vaccine hubs on Tuesday at 9 p.m., but the website did not load until almost 9:45 p.m. Mark Levine, the Brooklyn borough president, said of the delays that it was “unacceptable to put parents through this.”

Some parents said they were more cautious about vaccinating younger children. Andrea Thomas, 35, a mother who lives in Sunset Park in Brooklyn, said that she had “no reservations whatsoever” about vaccinating her 13-year-old son and was more hesitant now about her 4-year-old daughter. Her entire family caught the coronavirus a month and a half ago, giving her daughter some immunity, and she is concerned about possible side effects.

“If she hadn’t just had it, I’d feel differently,” she said.

The number of daily cases in the city has dropped to about 2,800, from about 4,300 last month, according to city data, though the real number is most likely much higher because the city’s tally does not include most home tests. About 740 people are hospitalized with the virus in the city.



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