Dr. Saphier: Children have been hurt enough by lockdowns. Think twice before mandating a vaccine for kids

As highlighted in a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a real-world analysis of Covid-19 hospitalizations among adolescents aged 12–18 years showed 72 percent of those hospitalized had at least one underlying pre-existing medical condition. Of the hospitalized, 97 percent were unvaccinated, highlighting the importance of vaccinating high-risk adolescents.

PFIZER SAYS ITS COVID-19 VACCINE MORE THAN 90% EFFECTIVE IN KIDS

Late Friday evening, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published the clinical trial data on Pfizer/ BioNTech’s low dose, 2-part vaccine for children ages 5-11 years, which their independent advisory committee is scheduled to meet soon to review. The CDC’s own independent advisory committee will convene the following week and, if approved, the vaccine for this age group may be available at pediatricians’ offices by Thanksgiving, according to the White House plan unveiled earlier this week.

Undoubtedly, the FDA will authorize the vaccine in this age group under the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA); there is little question of that, since even early data demonstrate an ability to mount an immune response to SARS-CoV-2. However, whether the CDC will recommend a universal vaccine should be thoroughly scrutinized as this age group has the lowest severity risk for Covid-19.

Worldwide data show the fatality rate in young kids (5-11 years) from Covid-19 is less than 0.008 percent. Of the over 650,000 Americans who have lost their lives from Covid, fewer than 160 have been in this age group. However, death is not the only metric when it comes to determining whether this population should be vaccinated under the EUA. 

Hospitalization, persistence of symptoms for less than 6 months and post-infectious Multisystem Inflammatory Disorder in Children (MIS-C) should also be considered. Each having an estimated prevalence in this age group of less than 0.5 percent, two to five percent, and 0.2 percent respectively.

The fatality rate in young kids (5-11 years) from Covid-19 is less than 0.008 percent.

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