Daily Column – 31st October 2021

The FDA approved Pfizer-vaccination BioNTech’s for children aged 5 to 11 on Friday. The CDC is anticipated to issue final approval in the coming days, and the vaccines might be available as early as next week.

The safety data: Pfizer’s vaccine was shown to be safe and 90.7 percent effective at preventing symptomatic illness in a study of 4,700 youngsters.
Children will receive Covid shots that are similar to the vaccination equivalent of a kids menu—a lesser dose delivered by a smaller needle and, most likely, with more colourful Band-Aids.

Why is it such a huge deal?

Covid has infected about 2 million children aged 5 to 11, resulting in 8,300 hospitalizations and at least 170 deaths in the United States. According to the CDC, Covid is the eighth-leading cause of death among children in that age group.

“Children are not intended to die,” says CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, despite the fact that children are far less likely than adults to become gravely ill with Covid.
Vaccinating children could have far-reaching consequences for society as a whole, even if the children themselves do not get sick. More vaccinated children mean fewer school disruptions, such as quarantines, and less Covid transfer from children to more vulnerable people.

Expect regulations to be divisive, as they always are. California has already ordered that children up to 12th grade receive Covid-19 vaccinations, probably as early as next fall. A Covid vaccine would be added to a list of five others that are necessary for children going to childcare or school across the country, including measles and tetanus vaccinations.

However, there is a lot of scepticism about the Covid shot for kids. According to a Kaiser Family Foundation survey, while 27 percent of parents indicated they would get their children vaccinated right away, 30 percent said they would “absolutely not” vaccinate their children. This is more than double the percentage of persons who claimed they would not get vaccinated by December 2020.

Looking ahead, children under the age of five will soon be the only ones who do not have access to the Covid vaccine. It is expected that Pfizer will be able to submit data by end of the year related to the above age group.

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