At this time, the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is the only COVID-19 vaccine that has been studied and authorized for use by people ages 16 and 17. Data from Pfizer vaccine studies show the vaccine is safe and effective for this age group. Other vaccine manufacturers are also studying their vaccines in younger age groups but have not yet received authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Parent or guardian consent is needed for vaccination
Parent or guardian consent is needed for COVID-19 vaccination of 16- and 17-year-olds, except under certain circumstances (see Minnesota Statues, sections 144.341 (minor living apart) and 144.342 (minor who has given birth or been married). We encourage a parent or guardian to go to the vaccine appointment with their 16- or 17- year-old to learn about the COVID-19 vaccine and provide consent for the child to receive the vaccine.
If a parent/guardian is not able to go with the child to get their vaccine, ask the provider about their consent process and access to the Emergency Use Authorization fact sheet: Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine EUA Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers (www.fda.gov/media/144414/download). This is like the Vaccine Information Statements given before other routine vaccinations. Make sure all your questions are answered.
Looking for Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine appointments
You can use the map on State of Minnesota: Find Vaccine Locations (mn.gov/covid19/vaccine/findvaccine/locations/index.jsp) to search for providers who are offering COVID-19 vaccine to people ages 16 and older. Call the clinic before scheduling an appointment to see what vaccine they have available and understand their consent process. Some also include this information on their scheduling websites.
You can also find COVID-19 vaccine appointments at VaccineFinder (vaccinefinder.org), which allows you to filter by vaccine product to search for only Pfizer vaccine appointments.
Many vaccine providers are continuing to prioritize people in some of the earlier eligibility groups, like frontline essential workers and people with underlying medical conditions. It may take some time to find an appointment. Please be patient. Everyone will have an opportunity to get vaccinated, it will just take time.