It is true that the topic of COVID-19 has lost traction in the online sphere, but the numbers remain high and the world remains in a pandemic. After vaccination for adults, the US Medicines Agency (FDA) has now come to mention that the Pfizer vaccine is safe and effective for children under 5 years of age.
Under the proposed plan, the first two injections of Pfizer are given three weeks apart, and the third is given eight weeks after the second.
COVID-19: vaccine efficacy is 80.3%
The FDA has scheduled an expert meeting for next Wednesday to decide whether or not to recommend the Pfizer vaccine (given in three injections for children aged six months to five years) and the Moderna vaccine (two injections for children aged six months to five years).
According to an FDA report published Monday, children under five are the only age group not yet eligible for COVID-19 vaccination in the United States and most countries, but their hospitalization and death rate is “higher than in children and adolescents aged 5 to 17 years”.
A preliminary estimate put the vaccine's effectiveness at 80.3%, but the FDA noted that this percentage was based on a few positive cases - just 10, compared to the 21 sought for a more accurate estimate.
There are nearly 20 million American children under the age of five, representing 6% of the population.
If, as expected, FDA-appointed experts recommend both vaccines, the matter immediately moves to another panel convened by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which will have the final word.
Last week, White House officials advanced that the rollout of millions of doses of these vaccines in pharmacies and doctors' offices could begin as early as June 21.