Minnesotans as young as 12 years old can now roll up their sleeves for a COVID-19 vaccine.
It comes after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gave the green light for Pfizer’s vaccine in children 12 to 15 years old. Pfizer’s vaccine was previously approved for those ages 16 and up.
The Food and Drug Administration’s review of Pfizer’s data confirmed the shots were safe and effective in adolescents, and that the side effects were “consistent” with older age groups. In the study, nearly 98% of adolescents were found to have produced enough antibodies in the month after their second dose.
To help reach families who want the shots, President Biden’s administration said the CDC is working with state officials to enroll more pediatricians and family doctors as vaccine providers and to make sure Pfizer vaccine supplies are available at local pharmacies.
The CDC says providers may begin vaccinating the age group right away, and called it another important step to exiting the pandemic, and getting closer to normalcy.
In Minnesota, the health department says parents can now make appointments for their kids. As of this recording, Allina Health and Children’s Minnesota have begun administering vaccine doses to this age group. The approval means nearly 300,000 more Minnesotans are eligible for the vaccine.
While cases of COVID-19 are often milder in children, health officials have said vaccinating younger Americans would help avert future surges of cases in the adults around them and could accelerate the lifting of some public health restrictions.
Children younger than 12 could soon get their vaccines, too. Both Pfizer and Moderna are testing the vaccine in children as young as six months old.
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