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Knox County church hosts pediatric COVID-19 vaccine clinic for families

More than 600 people signed up for the drive-through event, giving families a chance to stay safe and healthy.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Families gathered at Shoreline Church Saturday morning, but it wasn't for service. Instead, they lined up in a drive-through event so entire families could get vaccinated for COVID-19.

Now that federal health officials approved the COVID-19 vaccine for children, families could get vaccinated together. More than 600 people signed up for the event, and cars filled the church's parking lot with families rolling up their sleeves.

"This is our shot, we've been waiting for this vaccine for months now," said Mary Thompson, the site manager at the event. "Preparing for the holiday seasons, we just want our families to be able to get back together and the kiddos getting this vaccine is one more step to that."

The event was organized with the help of Summit Medical and Shults Pediatrics. Alongside regular vaccinations, they also provided distractions for children who were nervous about getting a shot.

"Working in pediatrics, we've learned that you have to have multiple outlets to distract the kiddo when they're getting something they don't necessarily want to get," said Thompson. "We've got bubbles, stickers, we've got suckers to give out while we're giving the vaccine."