Children's Vaccine Information

Centers for Disease Control

Children's COVID Vaccine For Kids 5-11 is Approved by the CDC

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

The CDC has approved the Pfizer-Biontech Covid Vaccine for children five to eleven years old today.  

Centers for Disease Control Children's COVID Vaccine Guidance

How to find a COVID Vaccine for your child:

  • 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.

  • Find a COVID-19 vaccine:

  • Search vaccines.gov,

  • text your ZIP code to 438829,

  • or call 1-800-232-0233 to find locations near you.

For all details on help finding a covid vaccine for your child, please refer to the Centers for Disease Control Website:

How Do I Find a COVID-19 Vaccine? 

 

Kidsmasks.org Children's Vaccine Finder

and Adult Booster and Vaccine Finder 

 

 

 

Find a booster or vaccine for yourself and an appointment for your child's vaccination with our links to pharmacies and stores participating in the federal vaccination effort.  While you may find an appointment at your local clinic, doctor's office or community health center, Kidsmasks.org is providing the links to the CDC's list of pharmacies and stores to help you find a children's vaccine appointment or adult booster or adult vaccine appointment quickly, easily and accessibly.  Available in multiple languages and accessible formats, soon!

 

 

​Children's COVID Vaccine Approval in the News

To learn more about the approved vaccine for children, we have provided the media links for you to learn in your chosen format:

USA Today:  CDC recommends Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for kids 5-11, shots expected to roll out this week  

HEALTH

USA TODAY

 

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A federal advisory committee unanimously recommended Tuesday that kids ages 5 to 11 receive Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine, setting the stage for mass vaccination of America's elementary school children. 

Children in this age group could begin getting shots as soon as this week, once the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention signs off, as expected.   

Presidential adviser Jeffrey Zients said Monday that the Biden administration ordered enough vaccine to cover all 28 million American children in the age group. The administration’s distribution program will be “running at full strength” the week of Nov. 8, he said.

Though the vaccines carry some risk for children, their benefits are greater, concluded the CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, made up of vaccine and immune system experts from universities and medical schools across the country.

Vaccines will be available at 100 children's hospitals, temporary clinics in the community and at schools, as well as pharmacies and pediatricians' offices. Shots will be free, at one-third the dose of the adult vaccine and will be delivered in two shots at least three weeks apart. 

A number ofprofessional groups added their support Tuesday for childhood vaccination, including the American Academy of Pediatrics,the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners and the Pediatric Infectious Disease Society

Read More

Reuters:  
U.S. CDC advisers unanimously back COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11

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Nov 2 (Reuters) - Advisers to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday unanimously supported broad use of Pfizer's (PFE.N) and BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine in children ages 5 to 11, with shots potentially going into young arms as soon as Wednesday.

They said the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks. Much of their discussion stemmed from rare cases of heart inflammation that have been linked to the vaccine, particularly in young men.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky must sign off on the recommendations before the United States can begin administering the vaccine to children in the age group. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization of the vaccine in 5- to 11-year-olds on Friday.

The FDA authorized a 10-microgram dose of Pfizer's vaccine in young children. The original shot given to those age 12 and older is 30 micrograms.

At the outset of the meeting, Walensky said that pediatric hospitalizations had surged during the recent wave driven by the Delta variant of the coronavirus.

The risk from COVID-19 "is too high and too devastating to our children and far higher than for many other diseases for which we vaccinate children," she said.

Walensky said school closures have had detrimental social and mental health impacts on children.

"Pediatric vaccination has the power to help us change all of that," she said.

'WE ALL HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY'

The CDC presented data suggesting that every million shots of the vaccine administered could prevent between 80 to 226 hospitalizations in children age 5 to 11. Once authorized, some 28 million children will be eligible for the shot.

The panel members spoke enthusiastically in favor of vaccination of the age group ahead of the vote. Many said they were eager for their children or grandchildren in the age range to get the shots.

"I feel that I have a responsibility - we all have a responsibility - to make this vaccine available to children and to their parents," said panel member Dr. Beth Bell of the University of Washington School of Public Health. "We have excellent evidence of efficacy and safety. We have a favorable risk/benefit analysis. And we have many parents out there who really are clamoring and want to have their children vaccinated."

Pfizer and BioNTech said their vaccine showed 90.7% efficacy against the coronavirus in a clinical trial of children aged 5 to 11. read more

"The vote was unanimous because the evidence is so clear. Kids 5 to 11 are better off vaccinated," Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health who was not a panel member, said in a Twitter post after the vote.

The U.S. government and Pfizer have already begun distributing the vaccine in preparation for a widespread rollout for children, many of whom are back in school for in-person learning.

"We've shipped to dozens of states already over the weekend and Monday," Pfizer Chief Executive Albert Bourla said in an interview. "There is a Herculean effort so there will be doses available everywhere."

Earlier this week, the White House said the United States has enough supply of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for all 28 million children aged 5 to 11. While some children may be able to get their first shots as soon as Wednesday, the plans is for the U.S. pediatric vaccine program to be running at full strength by next week, a Biden administration official said.

Only a few other countries, including China, Cuba and the United Arab Emirates, have so far cleared COVID-19 vaccines for children in this age group and younger.

In the United States, around 58% of the population is fully vaccinated, lagging other nations such as the UK and France.

The share of young children who receive the shots may be even lower. Only about 47% of U.S. youth aged 12 to 15 are vaccinated.

U.S. states with the highest adult COVID-19 vaccination rates are planning a big vaccine push compared with states where hesitancy remains strong, potentially widening the gaps in protection nationwide, public health officials and experts have said.

Read More

The New York Times: Covid Live Updates: C.D.C. Panel Clears Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine for Younger Children

Scientific advisers to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday unanimously endorsed the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for use in children aged 5 through 11 in the United States, a move that will buttress defenses against a possible surge as winter arrives and ease the worries of tens of millions of pandemic-weary parents.

If Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the agency’s director, formally accepts the recommendation, as expected, inoculations for children aged 5 to 11 could begin as soon as this week. The Food and Drug Administration on Friday authorized the vaccine for emergency use in younger children following a near-unanimous recommendation from its own advisers last week.

Dr. Walensky made a brief appearance as the meeting began, noting that the day was “one that many of us have been very eager to see.”

Still, she cautioned that vaccinating children is just one important piece to the puzzle. “It is important that we also continue to vaccinate as many adults as possible to provide protection to children in the community,” she said, including those children younger than age 5 who are not yet eligible for vaccination.

Anticipating the agency’s decision, the Biden administration has enlisted more than 20,000 pediatricians, family doctors and pharmacies to administer the vaccines.

About 15 million doses are already being packed with dry ice, loaded into small specialized containers and shipped via airplanes and trucks to vaccination sites across the country, federal officials said on Monday. Several million pediatric doses should be available in the next few days, but the vaccination program for the age group will only start “running at full strength” in the second week of November, said Jeffrey D. Zients, the administration’s pandemic response coordinator.

The younger children will receive one-third of the dose authorized for those 12 and older, delivered by smaller needles and stored in smaller vials to avoid a mix-up with adult doses.

The C.D.C.’s guidelines for the vaccine’s use are not legally binding, but heavily influence the medical community’s practice. An endorsement would be timely, as Americans begin to plan for the winter holidays.

Although cases in the United States have been falling steadily for weeks, experts warn that indoor family gatherings during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays may send the rates soaring again, even if not to the horrific highs of last year. Airlines are preparing for what may be the busiest travel season since the start of the pandemic.

Vaccinations would ease the minds of many parents who are anxious to protect their young children and frustrated by frequent school shutdowns and quarantines. Outbreaks of the coronavirus forced 2,000 schools to close between early August and October. Every million doses given to children aged 5 to 11 would prevent about 58,000 cases and 226 hospitalizations in that age group, according to a C.D.C. estimate.

The C.D.C.’s advisers also evaluated information on the vaccine’s risks. There was enough data to conclude that the benefits of the vaccine outweigh the risks, even without more long-term safety data, said Dr. Matthew Daley, a senior investigator at Kaiser Permanente Colorado. “If we wait, we miss the chance to prevent many cases of Covid-19 in this age group, and that includes some very severe cases.”

Still, many parents are hesitant to immunize their children, citing concerns about long-term safety of the vaccine or because they fear that the vaccine is more harmful than Covid-19.

About three in 10 parents say they will definitely not get the vaccine for their 5- to 11-year-old children, according to the most recent poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation. A similar percentage of parents said that they would immunize their children “right away,” a figure that has barely budged since similar polls in July and September.

Before the F.D.A. advisers met last week, they were bombarded by thousands of emails spouting misinformation about the vaccine and asking the experts to vote against it. One common objection to the vaccine holds that children rarely get sick from the virus, and the vaccine’s potential harms may outweigh its benefits.

But while children are much less likely than adults to become seriously ill from the virus, their risk is not zero. Many children were infected with the coronavirus in the most recent surge, and children ages 5 through 11 accounted for nearly 11 percent of all cases the week of Oct. 10, according to data collected by the C.D.C.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, more than 8,300 children ages 5 to 11 have been hospitalized with Covid, and at least 94 have died. About one-third of the hospitalized children were sick enough to be admitted to intensive care units.

Experts on the C.D.C. panel spent a significant portion of their time deliberating a rare side effect called myocarditis, inflammation of the heart. The risk is highest in males 16 to 29 years, but even in that group, a majority recover quickly. The risk appears to decline in children 12 to 15, and is expected to be even lower in younger children, experts said at the meeting. Covid is far more likely to cause myocarditis, and a more severe version of it, studies have shown.

The C.D.C. has not definitively linked any deaths from myocarditis to vaccination, said Dr. Matthew Oster, a C.D.C. scientist who presented myocarditis data at the meeting. “Getting Covid I think is much riskier to the heart than this vaccine, no matter what age or sex,” he said.

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