28 Million Children Expected To Benefit From Pfizer’s Pediatric Vaccine

Younger children could now benefit from the advantages of being vaccinated against COVID-19 after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) signed off on the rollout of Pfizer’s vaccine for kids aged 5 to 11. 

Approval Of Pfizer Vaccine For Kids 

CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, MPH, announced in an official press release Tuesday that the national public health agency is now pushing for the administration of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in children below 12 but above 4 years old. 

Walensky said the move would benefit about 28 million children in the country amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, as they will also enjoy the same protection and advantages that vaccinated adolescents and adults have. 

Pfizer worked on getting the approval for the pediatric vaccine’s rollout for months. In September, the pharmaceutical company said that trial data for the vaccine was expected to come out later that month, and approval for its release could happen shortly after that. 

Aside from the dose for 5 to 11 years old, Pfizer is also working on a vaccine for kids below 5 years of age and above 6 months old. Clinical trial data for that vaccine was expected to come out in late October, according to CNBC

Benefits Of Vaccination In Kids

COVID-19 infection in children can result in multisystem inflammatory syndrome in kids (MIS-C), hospitalization, long-term complications and even death. Transmissions in kids surged throughout the summer due to the delta variant, with hospitalized cases increasing fivefold. 

Although official data showed that most pediatric cases were mild and self-limiting, getting vaccinated against COVID-19 can give them optimum protection from the novel coronavirus, lowering their risk of severe disease, hospitalization and long-term complications, according to CDC’s press release. 

“Together, with science leading the charge, we have taken another important step forward in our nation’s fight against the virus that causes COVID-19. We know millions of parents are eager to get their children vaccinated and with this decision, we now have recommended that about 28 million children receive a COVID-19 vaccine,” Walensky said. 

Rollout Of Pfizer’s Pediatric Vaccine

Though the pediatric shots can now be administered starting this week, initial rollout wouldn’t be across the country. Parents can expect to see the rollout of the vaccine scale up to full capacity starting the week of Nov. 8. 

About 15 million doses of the pediatric shots are scheduled to ship out over the next week. Of the figure, 10 million will be made available via pediatrician clinics, children’s hospitals, community centers and mass vaccination sites, as per ABC News

Meanwhile, the remaining 5 million doses will be distributed through pharmacies. Parents are advised to speak with their pediatricians or local pharmacists to learn more about the pediatric doses and their importance in strengthening the kids’ immune system in the face of COVID-19.

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