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Coronavirus Information Center

As the situation with COVID-19 continues to evolve, our team continues to work closely with state and local entities and following CDC guidelines to keep our patients, their families and our team members safe while we continue to provide quality care.

Keeping Kids Safe

Wolfson Children's Hospital has long been recognized for quality and safety. And during COVID-19, we've enhanced our commitment to keep all patients, physicians, team members and visitors safe. As we welcome children for procedures, appointments and surgeries, you can rest assured that we have protocols in place to keep them safe in our care.

Learn more about our safety protocols

COVID-19 Safety Protocols

Select an item below to see more information

  • Updated June 20, 2022

    Pfizer is authorized for ages 6 months +
    Moderna is authorized for ages 6 months - 5 years, and 18+
    Johnson & Johnson is authorized for ages 18+

    Where can my child get the vaccine?

    • We encourage parents to check with their local pharmacy. We provide these pharmacy links for your convenience:
      CVS   |   Publix   |   Sam’s Club   |  Walgreens   |  Walmart   | Winn-Dixie

    • Emergency rooms are not vaccination sites.

    • Sulzbacher is offering COVID-19 vaccines for children aged 6 months and up by appointment only at their Village Pediatric Health Center, located at 5455 Springfield Blvd. Call 904.394.4958 to make an appointment.

    Vaccine FAQs

    Is the vaccine approved?
    Yes. The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized the emergency use of COVID-19 vaccines for children 6 months and up. Both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend COVID-19 vaccination for eligible children.

    Will children get the same dose as adults?
    No. Children receive a fraction of the adult dose. It will be administered using smaller needles, designed specifically for children.

    What are potential side effects of the vaccine?
    According to the CDC, immediately after the shot, children may feel the mild side effects listed below. These side effects are normal, and are signs the body is building protection against the virus.

    • Sore arm
    • Redness or swelling at the injection site
    • Tiredness
    • Headache
    • Muscle pain
    • Chills
    • Fever
    • Nausea

    What are the risks of not being vaccinated?
    Though children typically do not get as sick from COVID-19 as adults, severe illness requiring hospitalization and critical care does occur in some cases. Additionally, children who have had COVID-19 may develop a serious, potentially deadly condition called Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C), which can appear 4-6 weeks after infection, even in those who didn’t have symptoms. Children may also have lingering effects of a previous infection, known as Long COVID-19.

    What are potential risks of the vaccine?
    According to the CDC, rare cases of myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle) and pericarditis (inflammation of the outer lining of the heart) have been reported in children ages 12-17 in the week following the second dose of the Pfizer vaccine: To date, 54 cases per 1,000,000 doses have been reported, which is .000054% (less than one-hundred thousandth of a percent). Though these cases are exceedingly rare, parents should contact their pediatrician if their child experiences chest pain, shortness of breath or heart palpitations following vaccination.

  • Visitor Policies for all Wolfson Children's Locations
    Updated pediatric/Wolfson visitor policies are on our Baptist Health website.

    Face Coverings Required
    As of July 28, 2022 masks are required in all Wolfson Children's locations, due to increased COVID-19 cases in our community.

    Parking at Wolfson Children's Hospital
    Read the latest parking information on our Baptist Health website.

  • Is your child a Nemours patient?
    Visit the Nemours website coronavirus information page to learn more.

  • Testing and self-isolation is required prior to inpatient surgery and procedures — even if you have no symptoms or reason to believe that you may be COVID-positive.

    Testing Locations, Hours and Parking Info >
    Clicking the link above opens a PDF that explains testing prior to inpatient surgery and procedures.

    Preparing for Safe Surgery: Self-Isolation >
    After testing, it is critical that your child, along with others in the household, be prepared to self-isolate for up to 4 days to prevent exposure to COVID-19 prior to a procedure or surgery. Clicking the link above opens a PDF that explains what to do, and not do, during that time.

  • Wolfson Children’s Hospital has long been recognized for quality and safety — and during the COVID-19, we enhanced our commitment to keep all patients, physicians, team members and visitors safe.

    Learn more about our safety protocols >

  • Please talk to your child’s pediatrician about testing. Many local pediatricians offer COVID-19 testing in their offices during business hours, or can refer your child to another testing site in the area.

    You can also find testing locations at these links:

    • Testing Locations in Duval: visit JaxReady.com
    • Testing Locations in Clay, St. Johns and all Florida Counties: visit Florida Health to search by county or city.
  • CDC website
    Frequent updates for individuals, schools, businesses, travel and more.

    Florida Department of Health website
    State-specific information as well as links to the World Health Organization’s latest reports.

    Baptist Health website
    Updates on its response to COVID-19.

  • Chat with our digital assistant from the safety of your home about your symptoms, travel history and other factors to help you self-assess your risk for coronavirus (COVID-19).

    Start Your COVID-19 Chat

  • Wolfson Children’s Behavioral Health has resources available for parents, kids and teens who are struggling with mental health. Click here to learn more about our services.

    We also have resources that help start conversations with and boost mental wellness in children of all ages.

    To access our 24/7 Kids & Teens Helpline call 904.202.7900 or Text LIFE to 741741.

  • What is coronavirus / COVID-19?

    Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a new strain of coronavirus, the virus family that causes the common cold. Its symptoms are similar to the flu:

    • Fever
    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
    • Chills
    • Repeated shaking with chills
    • Muscle pain
    • Headache
    • Sore throat
    • New loss of taste or smell

    Can COVID-19 affect children?

    Yes, but based on current evidence, children do not appear to be at higher risk for the disease than adults. Current information also suggests that, generally, children are less likely to become severely ill with COVID-19 if they do become infected.

    Are the symptoms of COVID-19 in children different from adults?

    No. The symptoms of COVID-19 in adults and children are similar. In the limited number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in children, most have had mild, cold-like symptoms such as fever, runny nose, and cough. Vomiting and diarrhea have also been reported.

    What is MIS-C, and is my child at risk of developing it?

    First, parents should feel reassured that multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is extremely rare, and survival rates are high. MIS-C is a condition that causes a range of symptoms in children who have been exposed to the coronavirus. Symptoms include:

    • Abdominal pain
    • Bloodshot eyes
    • Fever of 101 degrees or higher
    • Generalized skin rash, including on the lips, hands and feet
    • Signs of shock, including rapid breathing or heart rate, low blood pressure and change in mental status
    • Vomiting or diarrhea

    Currently, there are no known risk factors, but most children affected are between the ages of 4 and 15 years old, and have no preexisting conditions. If your child is exhibiting signs of MIS-C, call your pediatrician right away. If your child is severely ill, take him or her to a Wolfson Children’s emergency room immediately.

    Read this recent Juice article about MIS-C.

    How can I protect my child from COVID-19 infection?

    The CDC recommends encouraging children to help stop the spread of COVID-19 by teaching them to do the same things everyone else does to stay healthy such as:

    • Get vaccinated
    • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    • If soap and water is not available, alcohol-based hand sanitizer can be used.
    • Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose or mouth, with your hands.
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick (coughing or sneezing).
    • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces daily.
    • Launder items including washable plush toys as appropriate in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. If possible, launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely. Dirty laundry from an ill person can be washed with other people’s items.

    My child has a chronic illness. Is he or she at higher risk?

    As with adults, it is possible that children with underlying health conditions and/or who are immunocompromised may be at higher risk.
    These conditions include:

    • Cancer
    • Chronic lung disease
    • Heart disease
    • Immunodeficiency conditions
    • Neurologic conditions such as muscle disorders
    • Organ transplant
    • Treatment with medications that lower the immune system response

    Learn more about who is most at risk on CDC’s current Risk Assessment page.

    Which precautions should I take if my child does have a chronic health condition?

    Parents and other caregivers should be extra vigilant about monitoring for symptoms of COVID-19, which include fever, cough and shortness of breath. If your child demonstrates these symptoms, call your child’s health care provider for guidance about screening and treatment. As always, if your child is severely ill or is having another medical emergency, call 911 or head to your nearest emergency room. Visit wolfsonchildrens.com/emergency for a list of Wolfson Children’s Emergency Centers.

    Other things to remember:

    • Continue your child’s current medical treatment plan unless otherwise advised by his or her primary treating physician.
    • Make sure your child’s prescriptions are refilled so you have at least a two-week supply of medication on hand.
    • If you’re unsure whether your appointment has been affected by COVID-19, please contact your provider.
    • Follow CDC recommendations concerning travel.
    • Practice social distancing, which means remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible.
    • Ensure you have sufficient stock of prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, medical supplies, household items and groceries for the whole family.

    Learn more about who is most at risk on CDC’s current Risk Assessment page.

    If I think my child has COVID-19, should we go to the emergency room?

    • If you or your child feels sick, call your primary care physician.
    • Do not show up at a doctor’s office or clinic without first contacting them.

    Can you get COVID-19 through pools, hot tubs, and water play areas?

    Covid-19 while swimming Covid-19 while swimming part 2