With millions of Americans already vaccinated against the COVID-19 illness, the US President Joe Biden recently announced that there will be a new phase roll-out of vaccination campaign but this time around, it’ll be for the younger citizens between the age of 12 and 15 years.
Officially, there is no vaccine authorized by the US government for people under the age of 16 however the Food and Drug Association (FDA) the body in charge of such authorizations is looking to approve Pfizer’s request to amend the emergency usage of its COVID vaccine for people between the age of 12 and 15 as soon as next week.
“Today I want American parents to know that if that announcement comes, we are ready to move immediately to make about 20,000 pharmacy sites across the country ready to vaccinate those adolescents as soon as the FDA grants its OK,” Biden said during remarks at the White House Tuesday.
According to the US President, the vaccines would be given directly to pediatricians which will give parents and guardians the opportunity to discuss any important issue with their family physicians before giving the shots to their children.
Vaccinations would also still be available to kids 12 and older at pharmacies and other community centers says the report.
Since the vaccination is in two phases, there is also concern about some children’s inability to take their second shot if they happen to travel to other parts of the country however, Mr. Biden made it known that the option to get the two doses at different centers will be made available.
The push to take the age-limit of the Pfizer’s COVID vaccine down to include adolescents between the age of 12 and 15 have been made since April as the big pharma made it known that the vaccine is 100% safe and effective on younger individuals.
The FDA granted emergency use authorization to people ages 16 and older late last year.
Asked Tuesday about the prospect of a decision from the FDA, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said, “I can’t get ahead of the FDA process.” Biden stressed in his speech Tuesday that “the FDA, and the FDA alone, will make that decision.”
Biden encouraged parents to take their kids to get vaccinated once shots do become available.
“We know that adolescents are at risk from Covid-19. Although serious illness at the age range is rare, they can still get sick and spread the virus to others. So my hope is that if the vaccine is authorized, parents will take advantage of it and get their kids vaccinated,” he said.
The news is part of the government’s effort to keep its entire citizens vaccinated against the COVID-19 which has currently wrecked a serious health crisis in some parts of the world especially India with over 20 million reported cases.