PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — COVID-19 cases among children are increasing again, according to a new report from the American Academy of Pediatrics. Just like with adults, the virus is spreading extensively again among children.

Doctors say it’s more important than ever to get as many people vaccinated before the holidays.

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With Christmas break just days away, there’s a big push to get more children vaccinated.

“We are ready to go with continued vaccine clinics and testing of children and really continuing to make sure we’re all masking and doing what we can,” Dr. Barbara Klock, with the School District of Philadelphia, said.

COVID-19 cases in children are increasing and in the first week of December, there were 164,000 new cases — up 24% over the previous week. Since September, there have been over 2 million new cases and while COVID is usually mild in children, it can be serious.

“You do not know what healthy child will wind up very sick,” Dr. Klock said.

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The vaccine is approved for everyone over the age of 5 and Pfizer boosters for those 16 and older are also approved.

“We have seen the sense that it’s safe,” Klock said.

Many parents still have safety concerns. Thirty percent of parents in one survey said they will definitely not get their child vaccinated.

About 29% of parents of younger children ages 5 to 11 say their child is already vaccinated or will be right away.

“Think about the scale. On one side of the scale is the vaccinated, on the other side is the virus and I would tip it toward the vaccinated,” Klock said. “There are many myths around the vaccinated and they are truly myths.”

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The children’s vaccine is a smaller dose and it can cause some mild and temporary side effects.

Stephanie Stahl