Pfizer – BioNtech Pediatric COVID-19 vaccine is now available for children between 5-11 years of age. The pediatric vaccine is safe, effective, and will further prevent the spread of rare, but serious complications of COVID-19 in this age group. It was authorized by the FDA at the end of October 2021 for emergency use. In the beginning of November, 2021, the CDC recommended the vaccine for all children between 5-11 years of age.
Is the dosage the same as the adult vaccine?
Nope! The Pfizer COVID-19 pediatric vaccine is not the same dose given to adults. The COVID-19 vaccine dosage does not vary by patient weight, but by age on the day of vaccination. The pediatric vaccine is 10mcg while the adult vaccine is 30mcg.
How many doses is in the primary series for the pediatric vaccine?
Just like the adult primary series, the primary series for the pediatric vaccine consists of 2 doses. However, children will need a second shot of the Pfizer – BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine three weeks after their first dose.
What happens if my child turns 12 within those three weeks?
If your child turns 12 in the three weeks following their first dose of the pediatric vaccine, the second dose should be the Pfizer – BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for adults. However, they will still be considered fully vaccinated if they receive the pediatric vaccine.
Children who have already had COVID-19 should still get Pfizer’s pediatric vaccine. Currently, only children between 5-11 who have certain medical conditions associated with immunosuppression can receive a booster, as boosters are not yet authorized for children between 5-11.
Children may experience flu-like side effects. These side effects could last a few hours to a few days. These side effects are the body’s natural response, as it’s working to build protection against the virus.
Possible side effects among children after receiving their COVID-19 vaccination may include:
- Soreness in their arm
- Redness or swelling at the injection site
- Low-grade fever
- Muscle aches
The CDC does not recommend giving your child pain relievers prior to their vaccination to prevent side effects.
Can my child give me COVID-19?
You bet they can! A COVID-19 vaccine can prevent your child from getting and spreading the virus that causes COVID-19. Children can spread the virus the same way adults can.
Why should I vaccinate my child?
Vaccinating your child is a safe and effective way to prevent your child from developing serious symptoms of COVID-19. Though the vaccine can’t stop your child from potentially contracting the virus, it is extra protection for your child. With a COVID-19 vaccine, if your child gets sick, the course of illness may be mild to moderate.
Vaccinating your child can also protect your entire family and help slow the spread of COVID-19 in the community, including in your child’s school. The Omicron variant is proving to be highly transmissible and infection rates in children are rising rapidly.
If you have any questions regarding Pfizer’s pediatric vaccine, you can reach out to Your Health Lab and we’ll be happy to help you navigate through your questions and concerns.