i4Kids Director weighs in on Pfizer Vaccine Authorization for Children Ages 12-15
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) yesterday announced emergency use authorization of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 12-15. It is expected that doses will be widely available following approval from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices at a meeting scheduled for May 12.
It’s terrific news, as a parent and pediatrician, that our kids can be vaccinated. Although severe COVID-19 is rare in young kids, it does happen, and the vaccine will protect them. Young people can also spread COVID-19 to vulnerable family members, and we know that the vaccine is extremely effective at preventing this. All of the evidence so far says that the vaccine is extremely safe in kids. The vaccine has been given to over 100 million adults with essentially no serious side effects. There’s no reason to think that younger children will be any different. Think about what kids all over the country went through being out of school last year. The best way to get all our kids back in school is to get them vaccinated.The best way to get all our lives back to normal is for as many of us as possible to get vaccinated.
John Williams, MD
Director, Institute for Infection, Inflammation and Immunity in Children (i4Kids)
Division Chief, Pediatric Infectious Diseases, UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh