More clinical trials needed before children younger than 12 receive COVID-19 vaccine

(FILE)(Source: Pfizer, CNN)
Published: Sep. 2, 2021 at 12:47 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Coronavirus cases among young children are impacting their return to learn, but there’s still no clear timeline on when those younger than 12 will be able to get vaccinated.

Although the Pfizer vaccine received approval from the FDA, that is only for those 16 and up. Vaccines for those 12-15 years old is still under Emergency Use Authorization.

Dr. Debbie-Anne Shirley, a pediatrician with UVA Health, says there’s no clear timeline on when emergency use will be granted for those younger than 12.

“We need to the data to come out from these clinical trials, we need to wait for independent review from health experts and authorities,” Shirley said. “It seems that perhaps Pfizer and other drug manufacturers would start sharing some of their data towards the end of September, beginning of October.”

Shirley says the FDA requested to extend the number of children enrolled in trials to 3,000 and ask for longer follow-ups.

“It’s still a guess, still a prediction when we might actually see enough data and have authorization from the FDA,” she said.

Shirley says that could come late fall or winter.

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