When will babies and kids under 5 be able to get COVID shots?
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - There could soon be an approved COVID-19 vaccine for children under five-years-old.
Drug maker, Pfizer, said it’s ready to move forward with its two-dose vaccine for children in this age group.
There are still several hurdles Pfizer must clear before it’s COVID-19 vaccine is granted Emergency Use Authorization for kids under five.
Assistant State Health Officer for the Alabama Department of Public Health, Dr. Karen Landers, said she doesn’t expect to hear one way or the other until at least the end of this month or early March.
The process to get Emergency Use Authorization for five to 11-year-olds took a little over four weeks.
On Tuesday, Pfizer, and its partner, BioNTech, submitted their clinical trial data to the FDA for review, taking the first big step toward getting children ages six months to under five years old vaccinated.
The verdict is still out on whether parents will jump at the chance to get their little ones vaccinated, though.
So far, only about 12% of kids in Alabama ages five to 11-years-old are vaccinated.
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 31% of parents surveyed with children under five said they’ll get their child vaccinated right away once a vaccine is approved, while 26% said they definitely will not.
Dr. Landers said everyone who is eligible should consider getting vaccinated, while we wait for approval.
“As adults, let’s take the responsibility to go ahead and get our own COVID vaccine, if we haven’t already because it certainly does help to reduce the overall disease burden, severity, hospitalizations, and death in adults, and again, we really can look at kids five and above as being eligible, but let’s try to cocoon the younger children. Again, if we’re not vaccinated, then we’re really not helping the situation for the younger children,” Dr. Landers explained.
She said she has confidence in the vaccine process and was impressed with the data she’s heard so far.
Again, there are still several regulatory steps to come before Pfizer is granted Emergency Use Authorization for children in this age group.
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