Ranchi/ Jamshedpur/Dhanbad: It’s going to be a major decision-making time for parents, as the State government is set to give anti-COVID vaccine to children in the age group of 15-18 years, from Monday, January 3. However, the parents are confused and have evinced mixed reaction.

While in some cases, parents have given thumbs-up to the vaccination drive for their kids, some are reluctant, raising concern about safety and effectiveness and side effects.

When EW tried to speak to some parents, we found, a divided opinion. “We were waiting for vaccination for children for long. Finally it has come and we are happy. This will protect our kids from disease and its complications,” Mamta Sharma, a teacher residing in Dhurwa area of Ranchi Said

“We need to keep aside all myths about vaccination. At this point, priority is to protect our child from this deadly virus, which is getting muted,” Vijay Sharma, another Parent from Dhanbad replied.

However, there are some, who are not confident about vaccinating their kids due to a lack of trial data and rumours about side-effects.

“There are many forwarded messages on social media about the possible adverse effects on n children because of the vaccination. I am not willing to get my 16-year-old daughter vaccinated,” Vaishali Garg, a parent from Jamshedpur said.

“My entire family is fully vaccinated and I think this protection is enough for my kid. Even in the school, all the staff have got their both the jabs. My child is 15 year and I don’t want to take any risk at this stage,” another parent said.

The past experiences show that the COVID infection has been mild in children . The number of children requiring hospitalization during both the wave was navigable. But the emergence of new variants which are fast spreading has worried health authorities.

“We will be taking parents consent. That is mandatory…without consent no child will be vaccinated. The Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) has approved Covaxin for emergency use of children”, said additional health secretary.