Children aged 5 to 11 will soon be able to get a COVID-19 shot at their pediatrician’s office, local pharmacy and potentially even their school, the White House said on Wednesday. It contains a detailed plan of the required authorization of Pfizer shots for young children. A matter of weeks.
After a lengthy study to ensure the safety of vaccines, federal regulators will meet over the next two weeks to weigh the benefits of giving the shot to children.
within a few hours of formal approval, after expected Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Consultative meeting scheduled for November 2-3, Supplements will begin shipping to providers nationwide, with the tiny needles needed to administer injections to young children, and within days will be ready to move into the arms of children on a wider scale.
The Biden administration noted that a nationwide campaign to expand the protection of vaccinations to a school-going cohort won’t look like the start of the nation’s vaccine rollout 10 months ago, when dose shortages and capacity issues meant a stumbling block for many Americans. There was a painstaking wait. White House officials said the country now has a sufficient supply of Pfizer shots to vaccinate the nearly 28 million children who will soon be eligible, and has been working for months to ensure widespread availability of the shots once approved. are doing.
The White House said more than 25,000 pediatricians and primary care providers have already signed up to give COVID-19 vaccine shots to children, in addition to thousands of retail pharmacies that are already giving the shots to adults. Hundreds of school- and community-based clinics will also be funded and supported by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help accelerate arms.
The White House is also preparing to run a campaign to educate parents and children about the safety of shots and the ease of receiving them. As with adult vaccination, the administration believes that reliable messengers – teachers, doctors and community leaders – will be key to encouraging vaccination.
While children are at lower risk than older people of getting serious side effects from COVID-19, they do have serious consequences – and officials note that vaccination both dramatically reduces those chances and in communities with more permeable deltas. version, contributing to the country’s comprehensive recovery from the pandemic.
“COVID has also disrupted the lives of our children. It has made school difficult, it has hindered their ability to see friends and family, it has made youth sports more challenging,” US Surgeon General Dr Vivek Murthy told NBC on Wednesday. “By getting our children vaccinated, we have the possibility to protect them, but also to get back all the activities that are so important to our children.”
Murthy said the administration, which has been promoting employer vaccine mandates for adults, is leaving the question of the schools’ requirements to local and state officials, but called them “appropriate.”
“Those are decisions, when it comes to school requirements, that are made by localities and states,” he told NBC’s “Today.” “You have already seen some localities and states talking about vaccine requirements for children. And I think it’s a fair thing to consider going higher those vaccination rates. And it’s also in line with what we’ve done for other childhood vaccines like measles, mumps, polio. “
The administration notes that children who get their first shot within a few weeks of approval, expected in early November, will be fully vaccinated by Christmas.
According to officials, the US has purchased 65 million doses of the Pfizer pediatric shot – which is expected to be a third of the doses for adults and adolescents. They will ship in smaller packages of about 100 doses, so that more providers can distribute them, and they can be stored at standard refrigeration temperatures for up to 10 weeks.
About 219 million Americans age 12 and older, or 66% of the total population, have received the COVID-19 shot and about 190 million have been fully vaccinated.