PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Rhode Island children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years old can get vaccinated against COVID-19 as early as next week, according to the R.I. Department of Health.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the emergency use of specialized immunization regimens for infants and preschoolers last week.

Joseph Wendelken, a spokesperson for the Rhode Island Department of Health, told 12 News last week that roughly 20,800 doses are on their way to the Ocean State.

“It’s great news that some of our youngest Rhode Islanders are now eligible to be vaccinated against COVID-19,” Gov. Dan McKee said. “Getting your child vaccinated against COVID-19 now is an important step that parents and families can take to provide protection this summer and into the fall, when kids start heading back to school.”

McKee said the state is partnering with pediatricians, family physicians, pharmacies and other health care providers to ensure that kids can get vaccinated in “settings that are most familiar and comfortable.”

“Just like the many other vaccines that we give to our kids to keep them healthy and safe, these vaccines have been thoroughly researched,” Interim Health Director Dr. James McDonald said. “Parents should feel confident in the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccine and should get their children vaccinated for the best protection against COVID-19.”

Meanwhile, Massachusetts plans to start administering the kid-sized shots this week.