Another group of Americans is now eligible to receive Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine.
The FDA recently granted emergency use authorization (EUA) for children ages 12 to 15.
Dr. Michelle Medina, MD, of Cleveland Clinic Children’s, said research shows the vaccine works well in preventing COVID-19 and is safe for adolescents.
“The evidence that we have is that they do just as well with very little side effects and the vaccine continues to be very effective, at least in the 12-15 age group,” she said.
Medina said children and teens represent close to one-quarter of the U.S. population.
Even though most kids who contract COVID-19 experience mild symptoms, they can still spread it to others, who are more vulnerable. She added, reaching herd immunity is the best way to get our families’ lives back to normal.
In order to do that, it’s estimated that 50-80 percent of the population must be vaccinated, and that includes kids.
“Highly consider getting them vaccinated,” Medina said. “It is the most effective way to prevent them from getting it (COVID-19) at school or in the places where they play. And it is the best way for us as a community to actually end the pandemic.”
The CDC’s advisory committee on immunization practices (ACIP) meets on Wednesday, May 12. If the head of the CDC signs off on the committee’s recommendations, the first shots for children kids 12 and up could come by the end of the week.