A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel unanimously determined on Wednesday that Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective for children under the age of 5.
The panel also unanimously found that Pfizer’s three-shot vaccine series for children ages 6 months through age 4 was safe and effective.
Moderna's two-shot vaccine is intended for children ages 6 months through age 5. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will review the data and offer its recommendation.
The vaccine dosage for young children is significantly lower than the adult version. Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine offers a dose one-tenth the level adults receive. Moderna’s vaccine is one-fourth the dosage for children under 5.
Children under age 5 are the only age group not eligible for COVID-19 vaccines.
Polling shows that most parents do not appear enthusiastic about vaccinating their children.
A poll released by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 18% of parents of children under age 5 plan to get their kids vaccinated “right away.” A plurality, 38%, said they will “wait and see.” The poll found that 11% of parents would only vaccinate their children if required, and 27% said they would “definitely not” vaccinate their children.
The survey consisted of 1,899 adults conducted from April 12-26.
The Biden administration said it has 10 million low-dose COVID-19 vaccines ready to be distributed throughout the U.S. The White House said vaccines would be available from children’s hospitals to local pharmacies.
Nearly 18 million children are yet to be eligible for COVID-19 vaccination.
Overall, 70.9% of Americans ages 5 and up are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, with the highest percentage of those vaccinated being seniors. According to CDC data, more than 91% of those ages 65 and over are fully vaccinated.
Eligible children, on the other hand, have been lagging behind vaccination rates. Just 29.4% of children ages 5-11 are fully vaccinated.