Pfizer started testing its COVID-19 vaccine on 4,500 children in March. These children were school-age children aged 5-11 years, preschool-aged children aged 2-5 years, and infants 6 months to 2 year old.
Pfizer stated that the vaccine for school-age children is the same as the vaccine for adults but with a lower dose. Pfizer said that it was working to submit data to the FDA for 5- to 11 year-olds within the next few weeks.
“The FDA wants data on safety and side effects as well as the immunogenicity and how strong the vaccine is in older people before they take it down,” stated Dr. John Bradley who is the infectious diseases medical director at Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego.
The FDA announced Friday a new standard to be used in pediatric COVID-19 vaccine trials. Two-month follow up period must be included in clinical trials after administering the final dose. This is where vaccine manufacturers can monitor the effects. Bradley stated that this is the best time for side effects to manifest.
“If there is fever, arthritis, myocarditis or any other symptoms, please let us know. [it appears]Bradley said that it was within the first two weeks.
Many parents wonder if vaccines for their children are necessary when the COVID-19 mortality rate for children is lower than 0.1%. Bradley stated that infected children can spread the virus to grandparents and other people at higher risk. Bradley believes that vaccinating youth would bring the community back into normalcy.
“I want children to be able to play with one another again and just be kids.” Bradley stated that immunization is the key to this.
Bradley believes that Pfizer will soon be granted an EUA for its vaccine, which is for children aged 5-11 years old. He predicts that COVID-19 will soon be required for all children suffering from Hepatitis B and Tetanus in the next few years.
The FDA and CDC have already approved Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccination for all ages 12 and over.
Rina Nakano originally published this story on Scripps station KGTV in San Diego.