ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska public health officials hope to begin vaccinating children 12 and up against COVID-19 as early as Wednesday.
Parents were permitted Monday to sign up their children for appointments after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted an emergency use authorization to drug company Pfizer to provide its COVID-19 vaccine for people 12 through 15.
Prior to the emergency authorization, the vaccine was approved for people 16 and older.
The state was still awaiting final recommendations from the CDC, which are expected to come early Wednesday, according to Dr. Anne Zink, Alaska’s chief medical officer.
Zink was optimistic that Alaska vaccine providers will get the green light Wednesday to begin administering vaccinations to the 40,000 children between 12 and 15 in the state, the Anchorage Daily News reported.
The FDA’s decision was based on trials conducted in more than 2,000 kids 12 to 15 that showed the vaccine is safe and effective for young people. In that trial, none of the 1,131 vaccinated children contracted COVID-19, compared to 18 positive cases in the placebo group of 1,129 children.