Many parents hoping for COVID-19 vaccines for their children younger than 12 may get their wish this fall, according to Dr. Anthony Fauci.
The vaccines could be authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this fall for children ages 5 to 11, Fauci told CNN on Tuesday.
“If you look at the studies that we at the (National Institutes of Health) are doing in collaboration with the pharmaceutical companies, there will be enough data to apply for an emergency use authorization both by Pfizer, a little bit later by Moderna,” Fauci, who directs the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases says.
“I believe both of them — with Pfizer first — will very likely be able to have a situation where we’ll be able to vaccinate children. If the FDA judges the data sufficient enough, we could do it by the fall,” Fauci adds.
In a statement released Friday, the FDA said the agency will carefully review the data on vaccines in younger children once it’s available.
The agency is “prepared to complete its review as quickly as possible, likely in a matter of weeks rather than months,” Acting FDA Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock and Dr. Peter Marks, who leads the vaccine division say.
“The agency’s ability to review these submissions rapidly will depend in part on the quality and timeliness of the submissions by manufacturers,” the FDA notes.
Pfizer may submit its data to the FDA by the end of September or the
first week in October, company CEO Albert Bourla said on Tuesday.
Parents of even younger children may not have to wait much longer.
“We are working also on younger kids actually all the way down to 6 months old, between 6 months all the way to 5 years old,” CNN reports Bourla saying at an event hosted by the ResearchAmerica Alliance. “Those data will be available a month, month and a half later. So it will be end of October, beginning of November.”
Just like adults, children can become infected with COVID and pass it to others, so it is important that you encourage your child to practice the same safety protocols as adults.
Finding a vaccine
If you are looking to get your child vaccinated, the CDC recommends the following:
- Check your local pharmacy’s website to see if vaccination walk-ins or appointments are available.
- Check with your child’s healthcare provider about whether they offer COVID-19 vaccination.
- Contact your state or local health department for more information.
For more information about COVID vaccines for children, visit the CDC.