Hundreds of children roll up their sleeves in first drive-thru keiki vaccine clinic

Published: Nov. 13, 2021 at 5:29 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Over 700 families signed up for COVID vaccinations this weekend at Hawaii Pacific Health’s first drive-thru keiki vaccine clinic at Aloha Stadium.

Some families say they like the idea of getting their shots in the comfort of their car.

“A relief, it’s been a process,” said Carla Santos of Kapolei. “We’ve been hit hard with COVID from family passing away and stuff, so this is just an extra layer of protection to make it a little bit safer for the kids.”

Santos’s twin daughters, Camila and Kiara, held hands as they received their first doses of the COVID keiki vaccine.

“It feels more comfortable because we’re with our family,” said Camila.

“I like shots, so it doesn’t hurt that much,” said Kiara.

Meanwhile, Kaycie Garnett and her little brother Keoni were in their minivan getting their first shots too.

“I feel good because now like I can protect others and myself,” said Kaycie.

“We’re just thrilled with the turnout and then the reaction of the children,” said Carl Hinson, director of workforce development at Hawaii Pacific Health. “So many of these cars are coming in with two and three children that are getting vaccinated.”

“Lots of people are showing up now, certainly in months ahead, it’ll be a slower process to get the 5 through 11 set vaccinated,” said Department of Health spokesman, Brooks Baehr.

“But we think that as more people learn about the effectiveness and the safety of these vaccines, that more and more people will get their kids vaccinated.”

As of Friday, DOH says about 7,100 kids in Hawaii between 5 to 11 have received a COVID-19 vaccination.

Hawaii Pacific Health timed their drive-thru clinics so that the kids can be fully vaccinated just in time for Christmas.

“That’s what we were shooting for,” said Santos. “Like this is going to be a Christmas gift and maybe we can travel to see family finally.”

For the kids, it means much more.

“We couldn’t really do as many things as we used to do,” said Kaycie. “So, maybe now that since we got it, we can do those again.”

“Because COVID could be pau, and we don’t have to wear masks anymore,” said Kiara.

“So, we can go back to school and everybody can just have a normal life again,” said Camila.

HPH will be back at the stadium on Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.

They will also be at Kapolei High School next weekend from 8:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.

They’re offering all COVID vaccines including the booster.

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