On Thursday, Pfizer called on the United States government to allow children between ages 5 and 11 to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Pfizer revealed on Twitter that it had officially filed an application to make this happen with the Food and Drug Administration.
— Pfizer Inc. (@pfizer) October 7, 2021
The FDA will now confer on whether the Pfizer vaccine is safe for young children, and their official decision is expected to be revealed on October 26.
“We know from our vast experience with other pediatric vaccines that children are not small adults, and we will conduct a comprehensive evaluation of clinical trial data submitted in support of the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine used in a younger pediatric population, which may need a different dosage or formulation from that used in an older pediatric population or adults,” Acting FDA Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock said in a press release last week in anticipation of this application.
The Associated Press reported that Pfizer concluded from its research that younger children should get a third of the dose now given to everyone else and that after they are given their second dose, children between the ages of 5 and 11 developed virus-fighting antibody levels just as strong as teenagers get from the regular shots.
“It makes me very happy that I am helping other kids get the vaccine,” said eight-year-old Sebastian Prybol, who is enrolled in Pfizer’s study at Duke University. He has not yet been told whether he received the vaccine or a dummy shot.
“We do want to make sure that it is absolutely safe for them,” said his mother Britni, who added that she would be “overjoyed” if the FDA clears the vaccine.
At the end of last month, Pfizer board member Dr. Scott Gottlieb told CNBC that he could see the FDA approving the vaccine for young children sometime in October.
“I wouldn’t foreclose the possibility that this could be out in October,” he said. “They’ve seen a lot of clinical data. I’ve long said October is a possibility, but it is an optimistic possibility. If it slips, it could slip to mid-November.”
NEW: Request for Emergency Use of Pfizer’s COVID vaccine submitted to FDA for use in kids 5-11
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) October 7, 2021
Children have an incredibly low risk of complications from COVID-19. Given the fact that we really have no idea how these vaccines will affect anyone in the years to come, it seems extremely irresponsible to allow kids that young to get the shots at this time. Here’s hoping that the FDA puts a stop to this.