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Elmo, 3, joins youngest Americans in getting vaccinated

The nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street made the announcement in a public service announcement posted to YouTube.
FILE - This Jan. 24, 2011, photo shows "Sesame Street" muppet Elmo posing for a portrait with the assistance of puppeteer Kevin Clash in the Fender Music Lodge during the 2011 Sundance Film Festival to promote the documentary "Being Elmo" in Park City, Utah. Elmo got a COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday, June 28, 2022, according to Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind “Sesame Street." (AP Photo/Victoria Will, File)
FILE - This Jan. 24, 2011, photo shows "Sesame Street" muppet Elmo posing for a portrait with the assistance of puppeteer Kevin Clash in the Fender Music Lodge during the 2011 Sundance Film Festival to promote the documentary "Being Elmo" in Park City, Utah. Elmo got a COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday, June 28, 2022, according to Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind “Sesame Street." (AP Photo/Victoria Will, File) [ VICTORIA WILL | AP ]
Published Jun. 30

V is for vaccine.

Elmo got a COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday, according to Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind “Sesame Street.”

In a public service announcement posted to YouTube, the beloved 3-and-a-half-year-old “Sesame Street” star talked with his dad about what it was like to get the shot.

“There was a little pinch, but it was OK,” Elmo said in the video.

Elmo’s dad said he had a lot of questions for the pediatrician, who assured him that vaccinations are safe and effective for children.

“Was it safe? Was it the right decision?’ I talked to our pediatrician so I could make the right choice,” Louie said in the PSA. “I learned that Elmo getting vaccinated is the best way to keep himself, our friends, neighbors and everyone else healthy and enjoying the things they love.”

COVID-19 vaccinations for the youngest Americans started last week. That means U.S. kids under 5 — roughly 18 million youngsters — are eligible for the shots.

U.S. regulators authorized shots from Moderna and Pfizer. The Moderna vaccine is two doses and the Pfizer shot is three.

Last November, Big Bird got vaccinated — sparking criticism from some conservative politicians. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican, called it “government propaganda.”

The CDC advises vaccination even for those who already had COVID-19 to protect against reinfection, and says it is OK to get other vaccines at the same time.

• • •

How to get tested

Tampa Bay: The Times can help you find the free, public COVID-19 testing sites in the bay area.

Florida: The Department of Health has a website that lists testing sites in the state. Some information may be out of date.

The U.S.: The Department of Health and Human Services has a website that can help you find a testing site.

• • •

How to get vaccinated

The COVID-19 vaccine for ages 5 and up and booster shots for eligible recipients are being administered at doctors’ offices, clinics, pharmacies, grocery stores and public vaccination sites. Many allow appointments to be booked online. Here’s how to find a site near you:

Find a site: Visit vaccines.gov to find vaccination sites in your ZIP code.

More help: Call the National COVID-19 Vaccination Assistance Hotline.

Phone: 800-232-0233. Help is available in English, Spanish and other languages.

TTY: 888-720-7489

Disability Information and Access Line: Call 888-677-1199 or email DIAL@n4a.org.

• • •

More coronavirus coverage

OMICRON VARIANT: Omicron changed what we know about COVID. Here’s the latest on how the infectious COVID-19 variant affects masks, vaccines, boosters and quarantining.

KIDS AND VACCINES: Got questions about vaccinating your kid? Here are some answers.

BOOSTER SHOTS: Confused about which COVID booster to get? This guide will help.

BOOSTER QUESTIONS: Are there side effects? Why do I need it? Here’s the answers to your questions.

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