When can my children get vaccinated for COVID-19?
As we experience yet another impactful wave of COVID-19 with the omicron variant, the push to get as many people vaccinated continues throughout the United States. But when can you get your kids vaccinated?
Well, it’s been available for a while now for those ages 12 and up. Since May of 2021, a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine has been available, with boosters authorized for some teens. Late this year the vaccines were approved for children 5 to 12, so there is no need to wait if you have children within that age range. With those having kids under the age of five, a little bit more patience is needed.
As things currently stand, clinical trials are underway for kids aged six months to five years.
Of course, if you have kids in the eligible age groups, having the older ones vaccinated also helps protect your unvaccinated children by limiting the chance the older kids contract it in the first place.
Many pediatricians are hopeful that those under the age of five but older than six months can begin to get their first dosage at some point in the first quarter of 2022, pending FDA emergency use authorization. But as things stand, they may need more than two doses to be considered fully vaccinated.
As The Los Angeles Times reports, Pfizer announced that data from its ongoing trial of kids between the ages of 2 and 4 did not produce a “potent immune response” after one-tenth of the adult dosage. There was a response, but they’ll continue testing a third dosage instead of shifting to a higher dosage.
After a request for emergency use authorization, which Pfizer expects to come in the first half of 2022, it has typically taken a month for it to be approved, meaning we can expect a green light roughly a month after the request.
For now, the American Academy of Pediatrics urges everyone eligible to get the vaccine and boosters as soon as they can.
Kids over the age of 16 are now eligible for a booster as long as it has been six months since receiving their second shot of an mRNA vaccine, such as Moderna and Pfizer. Children over the age of 12 with certain health conditions, such as weakened immune systems, have been recommended to get the booster.
To find out where you or a family member can get the vaccine, visit www.vaccines.gov.
Story by Roger Gonzalez