2021-05-13 06:06:18 Pfizer Says COVID-19 Vaccine Works In 12- To15-Year-Olds
Pfizer Says COVID-19 Vaccine Works In 12- To15-Year-Olds
The coronavirus vaccine developed by Pfizer works very well in children aged 12 to 15, according to a report released on Wednesday.
Pfizer said in a press release that in a late-stage trial involving more than 2,200 adolescents in the United States, not a single vaccinated person became infected with COVID-19. The findings suggest that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine may be even more effective in children aged 12 to 15 than it is in adults.
Pfizer has yet to release the trial results. According to CEO Albert Bourla, the company plans to submit the results to the FDA in the coming weeks, “with the hope of starting to vaccinate this age group before the start of the next school year.”
If it receives emergency approval, Pfizer’s vaccine will be the first in the United States to be administered to children under the age of 16. Vaccinating children, according to public health experts, will be critical to achieving “herd immunity” or when so many people are immune to COVID-19 that the virus can no longer spread effectively. President Joe Biden has called for high school–age students to be immunized by the fall in the United States, and elementary school students to be immunized early in 2022, if trial results like the one announced by Pfizer show that the vaccines are indeed safe and effective among them.
The vaccine was found to be safe in 12- to 15-year-olds, with side effects “generally consistent with those observed in participants 16 to 25 years of age.” according to Pfizer.
Pfizer’s vaccine was approved for emergency use for people 16 and older in December, and over 75 million doses have been administered to Americans since then. A clinical trial last fall found it to be 95% effective in reducing COVID-19 infections in adults; a recent study found similar 90% effectiveness in the “real world” since its approval.
Pfizer also stated in the announcement that it has begun vaccinating children aged 5 to 11 in a related global trial and will begin vaccinating children aged 2 to 5 next week.