(WSYR-TV)– Karin Reeves, a mom to twin baby girls living in Baldwinsville reached out to the Your Stories team back in September when she was struggling to find her girls the initial series of the COVID-19 vaccine. 

NewsChannel 9 helped Reeves find multiple options including Buckley Road Pediatrics in Liverpool which was providing the vaccine to non-patients. Reeves scored an appointment there for both of her daughters and said the experience was great. However, when she went to book the appointments for their second dose in the three-dose Pfizer series for kids under five years old she was informed the office was no longer offering the shot to non-patients. 

NewsChannel 9 reached out to Buckley Road Pediatrics and Office Manager Stephanie Hubbs said they had to halt their service to non-patients because of low staffing levels and a major increase in sick patients to their office due to seasonal spikes in respiratory illnesses. 

I think they were doing a great service to our community by offering it to non-patients and it’s a widespread problem that places don’t have enough nurses right now.

Karin Reeves, Baldwinsville mom of two

She was unfortunately back to the drawing board to try and find her 17-month-old twins a second dose in time to keep them on schedule. 

“I called my own office and asked them if they were doing a clinic they said yes they were planning to do a clinic and then I kinda asked well why haven’t I heard from anybody and they just said oh our list is so long that we haven’t gotten to you yet,” Reeves said. 

Next, she checked in with the Onondaga County Health Department and was told there were no additional pediatric vaccine clinics scheduled directing her to the Upstate Healthcare Center’s clinic, they were booked into the next year. Pharmacies are also off the table for kids under the age of three. 

NewsChannel 9 reached out to the Onondaga County Health Department to see why they weren’t holding pediatric clinics anymore. They responded in a statement saying: 

“The Onondaga County Health Department has held four pediatric COVID vaccination clinics since the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines were approved for use in children under five years of age in June 2022, and not all appointment slots were filled. The Health Department has helped link parents with pediatric providers who do offer the vaccines, as well as helped supply vaccines to Pediatricians and Family Medicine physicians so that they may have them available in their offices.”

Onondaga County Health Department

Luckily, Reeves was able to get an appointment through the Madison County Health Department, an hour-and-a-half drive roundtrip. 

I have the ability to do that I’m lucky but I know there are parents in this area that do not have time or the gas money.

Karin Reeves, Baldwinsville mom of two

If you have a child under the age of three and can’t get a vaccine at your doctor’s office here are the options the Your Stories team was able to find in Central New York.

  1. Upstate Healthcare Center Clinic
    1. Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine is offered for kids 6 months-5 years old. 
    2. Held every Thursday by appointment only. 
    3. Call 315-464-2778 and press 0 to make an appointment.
    4. Appointments are booked until January 5, 2023.
  2. Madison County Health Department Clinic
    1. Clinics offered throughout the week at the Madison County Health Department
    2. Call 315-366-2361 Option 2 to make an appointment. 
  3. Tompkins County Health Department Immunization Clinic
    1. Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine is offered for kids 6 months-5 years old. 
    2. Held every Friday by appointment only.
    3. Call 607-274-6604 to book an appointment.
  4. Oswego County Health Department Clinic
    1. Vaccine clinic for kids and adults runs every Tuesday.
    2. 12:30pm-3:30pm at the Nick Sterio Public Health Clinic.

The Your Stories team also reached out to Cayuga County who said they are not offering pediatric vaccines at this time. Children five and above can go to a pharmacy to get the vaccine.