UW Health encourages families to get older teens vaccinated against COVID-19

Published: Apr. 15, 2021 at 9:32 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Doctors are encouraging parents of children ages 16-17 to get their teen vaccinated against COVID-19, saying the less chance there will be of a vaccine backup as more children become eligible and in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Pfizer has already asked the FDA for emergency use authorization of its shot for ages 12-15, but will be moving to younger patients gradually in vaccine trials. Moderna is also studying its vaccine in adolescents, but will eventually move to children as young as six months.

UW School of Medicine and Public Health professor of pediatrics Dr. Jim Conway explained that children becoming vaccinated will be vital in reaching immunity for all Americans.

“As much as we can getting everyone vaccinated over the next couple of months so that when these are approved for kids, then they’re really the primary group that are lining up because we’re really like to have, certainly the middle and high school kids, if we can have them immunized before we get to the fall semester,” said Dr. Conway.

UW Health said the process to authorize vaccines for children may not be complete until late 2021 or early 2022.

Dr. Conway also said researchers are analyzing the amount of dose children will need, which will likely be less than what is approved for adults.

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