On Sunday, October 25, former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb predicted that the COVID-19 vaccine for kids aged 5 to 11 years old would roll out around November 4-5, 2021. Dr. Anthony Fauci indirectly backed this with a similar projection, saying children will be able to receive the first dose at the top of next month. Fauci projects they will be fully immunized by the holidays.
“If Pfizer does get the authorization on Tuesday from FDA, even before the CDC votes on this on November 2 and 3, they’ll start to ship it into the supply chain so it will be available for use once there is a hopefully positive vote from CDC, said Dr. Gottlieb. He appeared on CBS’ Face the Nation on Sunday. “So, it could be as early as November 4 and 5 that you can go into some locations and get your child vaccinated,” he said.
Dr. Gottlieb sits on the board for Pfizer-BioNTech.
During the testing phase, children were given a 10 microgram vaccine dose, which is one-third of the amount used for those 12 and up. NPR says this was to lessen any potential side effects while still garnering a response from the immune system. On October 22, the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was found to be more than 90% effective in kids aged 5 to 11.
During the trial, the kids received two doses three weeks apart.
The New York Times reported that an advisory board to the F.D.A. took a look at Pfizer’s application on Tuesday, October 26. They then voted on whether or not the F.D.A. should approve emergency use. Upon potential approval, President Biden was looking to have the vaccine delivered directly to pediatricians’ offices to curb concerns about carrying children to a large vaccination site. Ideally, children would be able to receive the shot from an office they are already comfortable with.
“It could be stored in a regular refrigerator for up to 10 weeks. It was purposely packaged that way,” Gottlieb said. “And so, the idea is to try to get it into pediatrician’s offices because we know that getting children vaccinated is a much more consultative endeavor.”
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