Infectious Disease

When will a COVID-19 vaccine be accessible for all youngsters?

December 16, 2020

4 min read

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Source:

Healio interviews.

Disclosure:
Chandra-Puri and Goza do not report any relevant financial information.

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On December 11th, the FDA granted emergency approval for a COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, which is available for patients 16 years and older.

Another COVID-19 vaccine, developed by Moderna Inc. and the NIH, is expected to receive an Emergency Authorization (EUA) this week.

Children have only recently been enrolled in COVID-19 vaccine studies, and it is unclear when children under the age of 16 will have access to a vaccine.

Based on guidelines from the CDC Advisory Committee on Vaccination Practices, healthcare workers and residents of long-term care facilities will be vaccinated first. Non-medical basic workers, elderly patients, and patients with high-risk diseases are prioritized in the following phases.

Children have only recently been enrolled in COVID-19 vaccine studies, and it is unclear when children under the age of 16 will have access to a vaccine.

Sally Goza

“While [the EUA] is an important step forward, the work has only just begun, ”said AAP President Sally Goza, MD, FAAPsaid in a statement. “The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a devastating impact on children’s health, so it is absolutely vital that children have access to COVID-19 vaccines that are safe and effective for their use.”

As the number of pediatric cases continues to rise, Healio joined in Anita Chandra-Puri, MD, a pediatrician for Northwestern Medicine and spokesman for the AAP, on the delay in testing COVID-19 vaccines in pediatric populations.

Question: Often, Children are among the last to enter clinical trials. Concerned that enough children will be enrolled in clinical trials for the COVID-19 vaccines to benefit from an approved vaccine?

Anita Chandra-Puri

Reply: I think it’s really important that children are involved. Patient participation in clinical trials is a stress in itself. I think a lot of people are reluctant to involve their children. Before a vaccine can actually be approved for use in children, enough children must be involved in the clinical trials to understand the safety implications and effectiveness of the vaccine in children, and to ensure that we understand all side effect profiles. because this is such a new disease. We really want to be inclusive, but of course we want to be careful.

Q: How do you think children should be prioritized in order to receive the vaccine?

A: It’s very interesting. In my experience to date, the vast majority of the children I have seen or cared for have had a very mild illness, similar to other respiratory diseases, although there are some children who have experienced significant complications, such as: B. the inflammatory multisystem syndrome in children. So do I think all kids have to stand in line now for the vaccine? I think there are other groups who are likely to be at greater risk of complications or significant morbidity or mortality from coronavirus. I think kids should be in line for this vaccine at some point, but I don’t think they should be on top in any way.

Q: F.following We can estimate a recommendation from children younger than 16 years have access to a COVID vaccine?

A: I don’t know that there is currently any way to gauge this. All of this is evolving. It would be nice to have it all together before the next school year, but I can’t know. I don’t know anyone can tell you this right now because enough kids need to be involved in the studies and we need to see enough safety data. In addition, enough vaccine must be made at the end of production to vaccinate children. But I don’t know anyone can tell you when this will happen.

Q: What else needs to be done to test the safety and effectiveness of a vaccine? in the Persons aged 12 to 15 years.

A: Enough adolescents, i.e. children aged 12 to 15, must be involved in the actual vaccination, and there must be enough time post-vaccination to study the vaccine’s effectiveness and immunogenicity and duration of protection. I think we will get a lot of information from the millions of adults who will also be vaccinated. And so these patients are also observed for a certain time in the studies carried out so far. I think it will take up to 2 years to see how long the vaccine or immunogenicity lasts in these patients. Some of this information is likely to be extrapolated for younger age groups as well, but I think there just needs to be a number of people involved in the vaccination trials for us to get to the point where we feel like we should vaccinate children Well, or we could sure vaccinate children too.

When you think of the bodies of 16 to 17 year olds, [their] The immunogenicity is similar to that of adults. Then there are 12 to 15 year old children who are in the pubescent stage of life and younger children in the elementary school group and then the youngest children. There are different age groups that need to be screened and there definitely needs to be participants in vaccination trials from different age groups.

Q: Do you believe the COVID-19 vaccine? should be added on the routine vaccination list?

A: It’s hard to say, but if we find it safe and effective, and we see this viral infection lingering over the years, then absolutely. I think it would be important to be on the routine vaccination list, but at this point there is no way to know.

Q: What is the relevance of vaccinating children in relation to adults? We have seen several different study results that children have shown are silent spreader And if that is the case and we send kids back to school, we need to consider children’s safety, but what if kids pass them on to teachers and staff?

A: At this point it would be very important to vaccinate all adults as we know there is adult safety data. This then provides at least some protection for the adults to take care of the children. If kids get the infection but don’t have a serious illness, that’s lucky for kids, but we want to protect everyone around them, and that was the whole problem this year. We wanted to make sure that children, even if they don’t seem so sick, are protecting their loved ones, caregivers or teachers. Because of this, I think that the introduction of adults must be vaccinated first [is correct] because we know there is adult safety data.

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