WACO, Texas — Pfizer has announced that new trials show its vaccine is safe and effective for kids ages five to 11.
The announcement by Pfizer comes as the delta variant continues to spread through schools and more and more kids are being hospitalized.
Since school began, the spread of COVID-19 and the delta variant has been skyrocketing and infected kids of all ages are ending up in the hospital as a result.
”Including ICU admissions, some kids go on the ventilator and it’s not sparing any age in the children,” said Dr. Madjusha Gaglani, Sections Chief for Pediatric Infectious Diseases at Baylor Scott & White.
That's why the announcement by Pfizer is giving medical professionals hope.
Hope that parents will soon be able to vaccinate their youngest kids against COVID-19 similar to vaccinating for other illnesses.
”It’s children that receive most of the vaccines early and it really is the difference between being well and being sick,” said Kelly Craine, the Public Information Officer with the McLennan County Public Health District.
Over 2,200 kids participated in the Pfizer trials and they say the results are mirroring what they see in young adults.
”The antibody response is similar to people that are 16 to 25 years old that have received two doses of the vaccine,” said Dr. Gaglani
Pediatric medical professionals are excited about Pfizer’s announcement, especially for kids in this age group whose only defense against COVID-19 is a mask.
”The little 5 to 12-year-olds, it’s kind of hard for them to keep a mask on all the time. I know they’re trying their hardest but this will just give them an added layer of protection,” said Amy Mersiovsky, Pediatric Nurse and Nursing Department Chair for Texas A&M Central Texas.
While Pfizer says their vaccine is safe for kids, it will still be a while before kids ages 5 to 11 can go out and get it.
”It’s still going to have to go through the process and the FDA and the going to the ACIP for recommendations. So, while this is exciting news, there is nothing we can move on just yet,” said Craine.
Even though it could be weeks before the vaccine is approved for young kids, Pfizer's announcement has given doctors and parents a light of hope at the end of a very long tunnel.