On Oct. 24, White House Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci made an appearance on This Week with George Stephanopoulos where he gave a positive update about the vaccine for kids under 12-year-old. Fauci told viewers that he strongly believes a vaccine will be available for children sometime between the first or second week of November.
“If all goes well, and we get the regulatory approval and the recommendation from the CDC, it’s entirely possible if not very likely that vaccines will be available for children from 5 to 11 within the first week or two of November,” he explained.
Prior to the announcement, the Centers For Disease Control (CDC) had not gathered extensive research about the effects of the vaccine on children ages 5 to 11, but families with kids in the age range were advised to continue mask-wearing protocols. However, concerns were raised after COVID-19 cases in younger unvaccinated children began to rise due to the highly transmissible Delta variant. The American Academy of Pediatrics notes that there have been nearly 6.2 million children that have tested positive for COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic. This past week, around 131,000 COVID-19 cases among children were added to that startling number. Currently, only children 12 or older are eligible to receive full-strength doses of the Pfizer vaccine.
The news comes just days after a study led by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) discovered that kid-size doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine appear to be 91 percent safe in preventing “symptomatic infections” in children 5 to 11-years-old, according to CNBC News.
The pharmaceutical company followed 2,268 kids in the low age group who received two doses of the vaccine three weeks apart from either a placebo or low-dose vaccine. According to the study, each kid-size dose was “one-third the amount given to teens and adults.”
Researchers conducted the low-dose vaccine test based on 16 COVID-19 cases in children given dummy shots compared to three cases among vaccinated children. None of the kids experienced severe symptoms brought on by the disease, but the vaccinated children showed milder symptoms than the wee-ones who were unvaccinated. Additionally, young children who were given the low dose vaccine were able to develop “coronavirus-fighting antibody levels” just as much as a teen or young adult who had received a regular dose of the vaccine.
The FDA is expected to post their final review regarding their test findings later this week. If the organization gets the green light from the Biden Administration, kid-doses of the vaccine will be ready to be shipped out come November.