As many of you have undoubtedly already heard, the first pediatric COVID-19 vaccine has now been approved for use in the 5 to 11-year-old age group. The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was authorized under EUA by the FDA on October 29th and was then endorsed and recommended by FDA’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices on November 2nd. This is in addition to the adult Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine that had been approved down to the age of 12 years this past spring and the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines (which are each currently still only approved for those over 18 years of age). The pediatric version of the vaccine is a smaller dose than the adult vaccine and consists of two doses with the second dose occurring three weeks after first.
Our practice does agree with the rationale for vaccine approval in this age group and we recommend that you do proceed with the vaccine for your child(ren) when you feel comfortable doing so. We have submitted applications to the Department of Health to hopefully receive the vaccine in our office at some point, but as of the publication of the post we currently do not have the vaccine in office nor do we have any estimate as to the timeline of if and when that may occur. As such, rather than delaying your child’s vaccine protection while waiting for it to potentially be available through our office, we do recommend proceeding with the vaccine at a community administration site as soon as you feel ready.
You can search for vaccine locations near you at: vaccines.gov
The following article from Healthy Children (the American Academy of Pediatrics’ parent resource site) will walk you through some considerations about the vaccine and also has further links to a wealth of additional information: Pediatric COVID-19 Checklist
If you would like to dive a little deeper and more technical into the the reasoning behind the approval and recommendation for the vaccine in this age group, please check out the following: Your Local Epidemiologist Pediatric COVID-19 Vaccine Information