BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Alabama public health leaders are preparing for children ages 5 to 11 to receive Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine.
The company will head before the FDA for emergency use authorization approval on Oct. 26. Dr. Karen Landers with the Alabama Department of Public Health said they are working on how to educate providers once the distribution process begins. They will be doing this with graphics and pamphlets that will be given out.
Landers said she doesn’t anticipate as many vaccine sites distributing the vaccine to kids aged 5 to 11, due to the age group. Most of the sites will be at clinics held by the ADPH, state hospitals, or pediatric sites. A big concern with the delayed release of the vaccine for the children is the potential side effects. Dr. Landers says studies performed in the pediatric trials show kids in the age group have similar if not less side effects than adults.
“Keep in mind children in the 5 to 11 age group are different in terms of vaccinating. We certainly know children need a little more information and a little more discussion and a really different expectation whenever you are vaccinating children,”Dr. Karen Landers, ADPH, said.
We spoke with a local pharmacy Ritch’s and they tell us they are prepared to meet the demand of children coming in when the vaccine does become available. They also tell us many parents are eager for it’s release.
“Parents would like a day parent’s would like to plan ahead. So being able to tell everyone Oct. 26 is the first day we can start the gears in motion really helps them put it in perspective,” said Rebecca Sorrell of Ritch’s Pharmacy.
To help differentiate the COVID-19 vaccines in use already, the product for kids age 5 to 11 will have different labeling and a different color to help with the distribution process.