Pfizer: COVID-19 vaccine effective in kids ages 5 to 11
Data on the vaccine still needs to be reviewed, and given emergency use authorization, by the FDA.
TOLEDO, Ohio — Just yesterday, Pfizer announced its COVID-19 vaccine is effective in kids ages 5 to 11. This data was very much anticipated by health experts and worried parents. The dosage for the 5 to 11 age group is lower than the dosage for adults, but is just as effective, according to Pfizer’s early data.
“They actually decreased the dose to about a third of what they’re using the older age groups. But despite the smaller dose, in the smaller children, it actually showed to be as vigorous as the other data we had for older age groups. So, we’re seeing the antibody response as robust and the threshold, it’s meeting that protective threshold,” said Dr. Frank Esper of the Cleveland Clinic Children’s.
Like the vaccine used in adults, this vaccine is two doses. Early data shows it is safe and generated a strong immune response in the over 2,000 young trial participants. The side effects were similar to those seen in older adults. There weren’t any reports of heart inflammation, as seen in children who tested positive for COVID-19. Doctor Esper says the Delta variant has presented a greater threat to kids and he notes that pediatric cases of COVID-19, as well as hospitalizations, continue to rise. He strongly recommends families vaccinate their kids once eligible.
“The virus has changed its way and is now able to overcome whatever resistance that children had before, it is not as effective now. Children are at risk. We are seeing children with severe disease. They are getting into the intensive care unit in the most severe circumstances and that is something that we want to protect our children against,” explained Esper.
Esper adds it’s important to keep in mind that this data is pending FDA review. Pfizer plans to submit the results of its study for emergency use authorization, like all previous vaccines, in the weeks ahead.