NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — This is a key week in getting kids ages five through 11 vaccinated against COVID-19. An FDA advisory panel is set to meet on Tuesday to decide whether to recommend the Pfizer shot for them.
Twenty-eight million children in this country are in that age category. Clinical trials, including one with children done at Yale, concluded the Pfizer COVID vaccine to be safe. Studies have shown it to be 91% effective at preventing symptomatic disease and there were no cases of severe side effects.
If the FDA advisory panel approves the vaccine for kids Tuesday there is another step.
“Then the CDC has to weigh in as well and that’s going to be next week Tuesday and Wednesday. Once both of those weigh-in, assuming they both give the green light for kids vaccines, we could start seeing those vaccines rolling out very shortly thereafter, even as soon as the end of next week,” Yale Medicine physician F. Perry Wilson told News 8.
Monday Moderna said its vaccine for children aged six to 11 shows a strong immune response and appears safe so the company is planning to submit its data to the FDA soon.
Dr. Wilson reminds parents not just to focus on getting their children the COVID vaccine. Kids will also need their annual flu shots, as well. There is a concern of resurgences of other respiratory viruses this winter.
“Flu can be quite severe in children and we highly recommend that everybody gets vaccinated for flu and apologize to your kids, give them an extra sticker or lollipop for the extra shot they’re getting this year,” says Dr. Wilson.