Parents should be patient about getting COVID vaccines for kids : Coronavirus Updates : NPR

A syringe is filled with a dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. While the vaccine is now available for children between the ages of 5 and 11, it may take several weeks for it to become widely available.

Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images


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Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images


A syringe is filled with a dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. While the vaccine is now available for children between the ages of 5 and 11, it may take several weeks for it to become widely available.

Patrick T. Fallon / AFP via Getty Images

Within minutes of the Food and Drug Administration Decides to allow low-dose Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine on Friday For children aged 5 to 11, the teams began packing the vaccine to be sent. The bottles are being packed with syringes, dry ice and tracking labels and loaded into shipping containers designed specifically for children’s vaccines.

But a senior White House official warns that parents should not expect their children to be vaccinated the next day if the Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the vaccine, as expected on Tuesday. ۔ Patience may be required.As shots may take several days to become readily available.

“We’re talking about a special vaccine for children,” said Jeff Zyants, White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator, in an exclusive interview with NPR. “We are working hard, planning the logistics and ensuring that vaccines will be available on tens of thousands of sites that parents and children know and trust.”

The process is not as simple as opening an appointment at a pharmacy, as has been adopted in recent weeks to promote adults. Young children will be given small meals through small needles for small arms. It’s a different form, in different packaging – a new program for a new population that needs more sensitivity.

“We urge parents to be prepared and come up with a plan, and this program will continue until the week of November 8,” Zyants said.

Last week, the administration asked states, pharmacies and pediatricians to order doses of the vaccine, and the administration and Pfizer are now working to re-arrange the supply.

“Our goal is to get as many vaccines as possible already, as we await the CDC’s decision in the middle of next week,” Zentz said.

Giants said the vaccines are being shipped to 20,000 locations in the United States and the packing and shipping process will take time. He said that until the CDC decides, parents should start looking for an appointment by the end of next week (places offering vaccines for children will be listed. vaccines.gov

“While we hope that the first batch of children will be vaccinated by the end of next week, most of the vaccines will reach their destinations by the week of November 8,” Zants said. “Between now and then, the program will move forward with all its might.”

In the United States, 28 million children are between the ages of 5 and 11, and the White House is launching 15 million vaccine doses, and more to come. He has ordered every eligible child in the country to be vaccinated, although he does not expect each of them to roll up their sleeves.

While some parents will race to vaccinate their early children as soon as possible, the Biden administration expects that there will be many other questions or they do not want to go first. Giants says the government will launch a paid advertising campaign, as well as try to get the word out through trusted local leaders and doctors and national celebrities.

The FDA approved emergency use of the Pfizer vaccine for children aged 5 to 11, based on a study of about 4,700 children. The vaccine was found to be safe and 90.7% effective in preventing symptomatic disease.

A key part of the Biden administration’s immunization plan is to vaccinate where parents already take their children for health care: pediatricians and family doctors, children’s hospitals and neighborhood pharmacies. There will also be pop-up and mobile clinics and finally school-based clinics, in the evenings or on weekends, when families are free.

This is an interesting and disturbing moment for pediatrician Nicole Baldwin. “We love these children and we want to vaccinate them.” He added that the pediatrician’s office would be a familiar place for young patients who are already well-adjusted and come for other childhood vaccines.

“Pediatric offices are very cramped and overwhelmed at the moment,” Baldwin said, practicing in Ohio. “How do we admit these patients? How do we do these clinics? How do we have the time to document them all? So I think it needs to be understood and given a little grace to the pediatricians. Is needed. “

NPR’s Alison O’Brien contributed to this story.

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