White House to set date for youngest age group vaccination — Analysis
According to a US senior official, Coronavirus vaccines for infants and children could be issued within weeks.
A top White House adviser on health said that the US will approve Covid-19 vaccines soon for children younger than five. This suggests that approval could be given as early as next month.
White House Covid-19 coordinator Ashish Jha spoke at a briefing Thursday. He said that during meetings scheduled for June 14 and 15, the Food and Drug Administration will be discussing the topic, with a formal determination expected. “soon thereafter.”
“We expect vaccinations will begin in earnest as early as Tuesday, June 21, and really roll on throughout that week,”According to the official, he added “every parent who wants their child to get vaccinated will be able to get an appointment”Within a time period of “weeks.”
The only group of children younger than five years old that has not received emergency authorization by the US health agencies is the youngest. However, vaccination rates for older children, those between 5 and 11, remain very low with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), putting the number at about 30%.
In mid-May, both the FDA and CDC said booster doses of Pfizer’s vaccine could be administered to the 5-11 age group, the most recent move to expand eligibility for Americans. Recent data from Pfizer has shown multiple instances that, while immunity declines with time, booster doses may be able to improve protection for those younger than 6 months.
Jha said that state governments would immediately be able to access 10,000,000 vaccine doses, and that private sites will also have immediate access. “plenty of supply” for young children.
“We’re going to ship doses out as fast as possible,”He went on. “We’re going to make sure that supply is always meeting demand. And we’re going to do everything we can to make it easy for providers and parents alike to get their kids vaccinated.”
Although states can place orders starting on Friday, vaccines cannot be shipped until approval by the FDA.
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