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  • Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine Cleared For Use On Kids Ages 12 to 15 In The U.S.

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it will bring us closer to a sense of normalcy.
    by Kitty Elicay .
Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine Cleared For Use On Kids Ages 12 to 15 In The U.S.
PHOTO BY Shutterstock/winnond
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the first COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in children as young as 12 years old, the agency announced on Tuesday, May 11, 2021.

    In a news briefing, FDA officials said that Pfizer’s BioNTech vaccine was cleared after data showed it was safe for use on children between 12 to 15 years old. According to a report by The Washington Post, subjects’ response to the vaccine was “even better” compared to 18- to 25-year-old adults who were inoculated.

    “The FDA’s expansion of the emergency use authorization or the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to include adolescents 12 through 15 years of age is a significant step in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic,” said acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock, M.D. in a statement.

    “Today’s action allows for a younger population to be protected from COVID-19, bring us closer to returning to a sense of normalcy and to ending the pandemic,” she says.

    She also assured parents and guardians that the agency "undertook a rigorous and thorough review of all available data, as we have with all of our COVID-19 vaccine emergency use authorizations (EUA).”

    In majority of confirmed cases, children exhibit milder symptoms or none at all. But with the surge of COVID-19 cases in the past months, more Filipino children may be sick with COVID-19 than what government records reflect.

    The age group of 15-19 years have the biggest number of positive cases.

    “Adolescents, especially, have suffered tremendously from the COVID pandemic. Even though they’re less likely than adults to be hospitalized or have severe illness, their lives really have been curtailed in many parts of the country,” Kawsar R. Talaat, an assistant professor of international health at the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health told The Washington Post.

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    “A vaccine gives them an extra layer of protection and allows them to go back to being kids,” he added.

    Pfizer trials in children began in late March and was the first vaccine to be tested to a younger age group. Another brand, Moderna, also started its tests in the same month and is still waiting emergency use authorization (EUA).

    In the Philippines, Pfizer was the first vaccine to receive EUA. Yesterday, May 10, the country recently received a total of 193,050 doses from the global COVAX facility. The vaccine is found to be 95% effective according to studies.

    There is no word yet how the U.S. FDA approval will impact COVID vaccination in children in the country.

    Click here for answers of frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

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