Advice about Covid Vaccinations

Parent Q&A

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  • A month before my daughter's 12th birthday I brought her to a clinic to get her a 12+ vaccine.  To do so I told them that she was born in 2008 rather than 2009.  I did this because we were going to see my 80 year old mother for Thanksgiving and the waits at that time for the 5-11 vaccine were too long.  Now, of course, she's got a card with an incorrect birthday on it and I'd like to 'clean it up' with the state so that her vaccination card reflects her real age (and her passport, in case we want to travel abroad again one day).  Does anyone have any experience doing this or recommendations on the best way to approach it?

    I didn’t purposely provide inaccurate information for my COVID vaccine, but one of my shots never showed up in the state database for whatever reason. To fix it, I submitted a request for correction through my personal health record on My Chart under the COVID section and another through the CA Vaccine website. I don’t know what happened in the background, and I never found out what was wrong, but it was fixed within a week of my requests. No one notified me, I just logged in and checked, and it had been done.

    You can try that.

    Why not contact CDPH and let them know that you intentionally gave a false birthdate for your child and want to correct it. I’m assuming this is what you mean by “clean it up”?

    In most parts of California, immunization history is recorded in a computer database called CAIR (California Immunization Registry). If your daughter had her childhood vaccinations in California, a CAIR id was created for her along with those first vaccinations and all her future vaccinations throughout her life would be added to that CAIR, providing a complete record that you/she can access or that health care providers can access. Because you provided a false DOB, your daughter's COVID vaccination was not added to her CAIR record but instead added to a new CAIR record with the incorrect DOB. California has a process for uploading pictures of correct vaccine cards to modify incorrect CAIR records, but because you have both, I would recommend uploading a picture of her vaccine card and also an image of her birth certificate or other official document showing the correct DOB. Hopefully that will facilitate the process to get the information in the incorrect record merged to the correct record. 

    From the CA vaccine FAQ site:

    What if my digital vaccine record is incorrect?

    If the information on your digital vaccine record is incorrect e.g. missing dose, wrong dates or incorrect brand), you may need to correct or update your immunization record. You can contact your provider to update your record or submit a request through the Virtual Assistant  . You will be notified of our findings and remediation actions within 2-3 weeks.

    We had a similar circumstance and the birth date was fixed automatically in the CA system without any request from me. When he got the second dose, I just "forgot" the card and got a new one with the correct date. If you're already passed the second vaccine, you could probably do this with a booster. Or you could just use the electronic record which may already be corrected.

    I don't know about changing the year, but just a heads-up: I believe that dosage for 5-11s is different from that for 12+. You may want to consult a doctor moving forward, not just about getting the vaccine card corrected but also for guidance around boosters, etc., given the difference in dose.

    Maybe bring it to your doctor and tell them that the birthdate is written wrong and ask if they can provide a new card. I would leave out the part about WHY the date is wrong. Also, FWIW would have done something similar.

  • Are there any private elementary schools with less than 15 kids to a class that do not mandate the covid vaccine for students? Looking in the Oakland/Eastbay area, but willing to travel anywhere in the Bay Area for a great school. 

    Currently, schools don't mandate the covid vaccine for elementary schools because the vaccine for that age group doesn't have full FDA approval yet. That said, you can't circumvent a statewide vaccine mandate by going private. When the California Dept of Public Health mandates vaccines for schools, whether covid or routine shots like MMR, this applies to both public and private schools.

    The statewide vaccination mandate, which kicks in at the start of the 22-23 school year, applies to all public and private schools in California. I don't know of many private elementary schools that will be mandating vaccination for younger kids before then (and most public districts are not mandating for under 12s until the fall, either).

    The official mandate isn't predicted to come through until the Fall '22 school year. Pending he CA legislature's decision on personal or religious exemption, there may not be an option to get out of the vaccine requirement unless you choose an alternative schooling route (outdoor school or some other "alternative learning" program). The CA legislature will supposedly take up discussion in early '22 if they will allow for personal or religious exemptions. From my perspective, that's your only hope. 

  • Un-Vaccinated Teacher at preschool

    (12 replies)

    My son is going to be going to pre-school for the first time this year.

    The admin of the school let me know that one of their teachers (not my son's teacher) is not vaccinated, when I asked. 

    It's a really lovely, well recommended school. They do require mask and overall seem to have an excellent covid-19 prevention policy. 

    How would you feel as a parent? 

    What is my responsibility to other parents who might not have this information and naively assume, like I did, that all the teachers are vaccinated? 

    I'm really torn up about this and thinking about switching schools even though I really really don't want to and not even sure I can at this late date!

    I wouldn't send my child there.

    wow. that is really tough. it's easy to say I wouldn't want my kid there (which I wouldn't) but it can be difficult to move your child and find a new school. it might be easier to see if you can get the teacher (and if there are any others) to get their vaccines. I'd probably ask the school to require it or say you want to pull your kid.

    I wouldn’t send my child there either :( sorry you’re dealing with this situation. 

    I'm going to respond the same way I responded to the other poster with a similar concern. I would first ask if the director is willing to ask the teacher what is making them hesitant to get the vaccine and provide resources from reputable sites like the CDC. Then maybe appeal to their conscience. If one of the kids got COVID and died or had serious illness, I imagine they'd feel awful. They may be part of a community that may have had historical and understandable distrust of medical providers too so maybe coming from mother to caretaker, the appeal will be stronger. Or you can appeal to the financial side of it. If they get ill or the school shuts down for an outbreak, treatment, time off, etc may have a huge impact for them. It makes me wonder if they get their flu shot too. Unfortunately, this would be a deal breaker for me though...

    Yikes, did they say if the teacher would be getting vaccinated? If not, then it doesn’t sound like they have a good prevention policy like you say. An excellent prevention policy would be ensuring that all staff are vaccinated. I would nope the heck outta there.

    I would find a new preschool. And I would tell the school the reason when you withdraw. It is not ok for people to be unvaccinated by choice (i.e. without a valid medical reason they cannot be vaccinated) and working with children who cannot be vaccinated yet.

    I have a three-year-old who has been in preschool for a year (so, under COVID the entire time). All the staff and the students three and older have been masked the entire year. (The two-year-olds are unmasked until they turn three.) There have been five or six colds that have swept the classroom in the last year, and all the students caught them, masked or not. Granted, those were typical non-COVID coronaviruses, so may be spread more easily from surfaces than COVID, but I am unconvinced that even the strictest adherence to mask policies can keep toddlers from spreading viruses to each other.

    I would definitely inform all the other parents (I would want to be informed, as a parent!), and perhaps you could band together and convince the preschool administrator that s/he should require that all teachers be vaccinated unless they have a true religious or medical exemption (a very small percentage of the population). If that doesn't happen, I would absolutely, and unfortunately, leave the school. 

    Personally, I would not send my child there. Any teacher who does not believe in science, or the scientific method, or a school that has hired such a person, would not be acceptable to me. The same scientific principles used in the creation of cell phones, cars, computers, etc., which we use every day of our lives were used to develop the vaccines. The virtual eradication of Polio is due to a vaccine. Millions and millions of people have taken this vaccine; it is tested more thoroughly than any before in history. Unless this teacher is Amish, and doesn't use any technology whatsoever, for hypocritical reasons alone he or she is not really equipped to be a teacher.

    Would this teacher be interacting with your child? If this is a larger school and there is only 1 teacher unvaccinated out of the entire staff I probably wouldn't be too alarmed. I am guessing the employer cannot tell you why they are not vaccinated, due to HIPPA laws, but is it possible they have a legitimate reason not to get it?  If their Covid prevention policies have been working and they are following through with them it should be safe to send your child. I would contact a family that has been there during the school year last year to find out how they handled everything when there was no vaccinations available and base my decisions on further information.  

    This would make me uncomfortable as a parent but since the teacher is not your child's teacher I would probably stay as long as the school is strict about doing pods. In my girls daycare, none of the classes mix, there is no overlap of teachers from one class to another. Once class at a time gets to play outside and the play yards are separate. The other thing to consider, are siblings. I.e. does that teacher have interaction with a sibling from a kid in your kids class?

    That being said, in my opinion a childcare provider that refuses vaccines (unless they medically can't) is essentially saying they don't care about the health and safety of the children in their care. I would just stress with the director how important it is that the teacher is never around your child. 

    Hard pass. Not worth the risk.

    Based on your description, I would not consider pulling my child from a lovely school over this. I also would not feel the need to inform other parents.

    Also, the moderators may have informed you directly or you may have seen it in the latest newsletter, but they appear to have rejected many responses related to your question because they were viewed as offering medical advice which violates BPN policy. I mention it because if this were my question I would want to know that many responses had been filtered out by the moderators. So what you see may not be a very representative sample of the responses that were received.

  • ISO Vaccinated pediatric dentist

    (7 replies)

    After skipping a couple appointments during covid, I'd like to get my 3 year old back to the dentist. The two places I've called (POW and Aloha) told me that "most" of their staff is vaccinated, but that they couldn't confirm that the person working with my kid would be. We've been very careful and luckily healthy so far, so I'd rather not put my kid at risk, especially now that vaccines are available. Has anyone had more luck finding a dental office where everyone is vaccinated? 

    I don't know if all of their staff are vaccinated, but we were happy to see our kids' long-time practice, Uptown Pediatric Practice in Downtown Oakland, celebrating vaccination of some of their employees on social media. Their website also details all of the practices they have in place to prevent the spread of COVID, and we felt very safe there. We see Denise Bass Allen but have occasionally seen their other dentists and they're great too. I don't think they or other practices can formally disclose vaccination status of specific staff, though.

    My kids go to the Oakland office of Alameda Pediatric Dentistry. I’m pretty sure they’re all vaccinated. When my 16 yr old asked if it was ok to take off her mask, the hygienist said, yes. We’re all vaccinated. They’ve been twice during the pandemic and it’s been fine. Th office takes all the precautions. 

    Zarrin Ferdowsi in Kensington is excellent and very careful, so I expect that all of the staff are vaccinated. Their COVID precautions have been top notch. (510) 525-2881.

    My dentist is a family practice that takes children starting around age 1. While I have not taken a toddler there, I’ve heard from parents of the nearby preschool that they are great with them. They sent an email earlier this year that all of their staff are now vaccinated.

    Lim and Yabu

    Dr. Lauren Yasuda Rainey's office is fully vaccinated, I believe! They've been great.

    I'm not really sure that any practice can guarantee that every person is vaccinated. When we went they were wearing double masks and gloves and everyone seems to have improved ventilation, less patients, there, etc. Everyone has to do what they feel comfortable with for themselves/their family but I felt totally safe and like it is time to do these things.

    In el Cerrito there is Dr Nicholas Ching.