Vaccines Now Accessible for Individuals Ages 16


Justin Tallis

Photo Taken By Justin Tallis

Frida Dajes, Contributor

Usually, when someone needs to be driven to get their vaccine, it’s because they need help getting their walker out of the car and assistance walking up to the nurse’s station. But, that wasn’t the case for Ashley Tareth. Her mother had to drive her because she doesn’t have her license yet. 

“My mom took me,” said Tareth,“I really didn’t have a say in the matter.”

Vaccinations for teens were introduced on April 14th and are available to teens ages 16 and 17. The only vaccine available to them is Pfizer, which has only two doses. These age limits were set by the Food and Drug Administration. 

“When I heard of it I was like okay I gotta get it if I finally want everything to go back to normal and here I am” said Tareth.

Tareth was among the first of her friends to get vaccinated since it became available to Florida residents 16-years-old and up.  

“I am actually extremely lucky to get the vaccine. This makes me feel safer when I’m out and people aren’t wearing masks” Tareth said. 

It was Tareth’s decision to get the vaccine. She wanted to be able to go out feeling safer. As soon as the vaccine got announced, Tareth had to convince her parents to do it with her. 

“Funny thing is that my parents didn’t wanna get it. I convinced them with the help of asking them if they wanna travel again. I caught them with that one” Tareth said.

When Tareth went to TY Park, she had gotten there really early. It didn’t take her as long as she expected but, she had waited three hours. 

“I’m grateful that I didn’t have to wait in line for so long. It took so long just to get a covid test i couldn’t imagine how long this would have taken” said Tareth.

Jasmine Lugo, a student from Hallandale Highschool, had also gotten the vaccine about a week after it was announced. Being a 16-year old with diabetes, her mom had made her get it. 

“I didn’t really have a say in this vaccine thing. I don’t have a problem with it but It’s just like a normal vaccine” said Lugo.

Lugo got vaccinated at Hard Rock Stadium, which was receiving people until 10 pm. She was being asked questions by the other nurses while one vaccinated her. They used this tactic to distract her. 

“I mostly thought it was gonna hurt but i didn’t feel a thing. I did have a slight headache and a sore arm the day after but it didn’t bother me much” said Lugo.

Lugo didn’t have too many thoughts on other people who weren’t getting the vaccine. She realized it’s not something a lot of people want.

“I don’t think I have an opinion on the ones who aren’t getting the vaccine. If they don’t want to great, if they want to also great.” Lugo explained.

Isaac Roblero doesn’t necessarily share the same thoughts. He’s 17-years-old and will not be getting the vaccine. 

“I don’t understand the rush with having to get this vaccine” said Roblero, “people aren’t going to wear masks regardless and there’s still gonna be cases”

He thinks that he’d rather get the virus right now tham having an illness caused by the vaccine in 10 years.

“, I told my mom I’m not getting that vaccine. What if it has something that’s gonna affect my health in the future? I’m not gonna risk that” said Roblero.

Many people around him, including his friends, have gotten the virus. He’s seen them suffer through that recovery, but still thinks It’s better than the vaccine. His main reason for not trusting in it is that it hasn’t been tested on enough. The fear of getting sick in a few years due to the vaccine wasn’t convincing him. 

“I’ve been told by my friends that if I don’t get the vaccine they wont hang out with me. I’m perfectly fine with that. Better be safe than sorry.