fatigue, headache, muscle or joint pain, and chills and fever.
Dr. Diego Hijano, an infectious disease specialist at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., welcomed the FDA authorization.
“With an uptick in infections and the potential for a surge in the fall, a booster shot for children ages 5 to 11 is an important layer of protection,” Hijano says. “Vaccines save lives. Parents of eligible children, five months out from their last COVID vaccine shot, should make appointments for their child’s booster so they have full protection for the summer from severe illness and hospitalization.”
Meanwhile, Califf urges parents whose eligible children have not yet been vaccinated to get the shots.
“Getting them vaccinated can help protect them from the potentially severe consequences that can occur, such as hospitalization and death,” he said in an FDA news release.
The CDC notes that more than 350 kids between the ages of 5 and 11 have died as a result of COVID-19, according to AP.
Today’s action follows the FDA’s authorization on Jan. 3 of a single booster dose of the Pfizer vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds.
The FDA did not hold a meeting of its vaccine advisory committee before deciding on the Pfizer booster for 5- to 11-year-olds. It said there were no concerns that would benefit from additional discussion by committee members. Relevant documents about the decision are available on the FDA’s website.
For more information on COVID-19 vaccines, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics.