Phoenix pediatricians getting ready to administer COVID-19 vaccines for kids after approval

More than 600,000 school-age children in Arizona may soon become eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The FDA is scheduled to make a decision on whether to authorize the Pfizer vaccine for kids ages 5 to 11 on Oct. 26. 

Phoenix pediatricians and pharmacies are already on track to administer the low doses as soon as Nov. 4.

Over the last few months, Valley hospitals saw a spike in the number of young, unvaccinated kids with COVID being admitted into the hospital.

"It's one-third of a normal adult dose, is what we're giving kids ages 5 through 11. It's the same timing when you get one vaccine, then 3 to 4 weeks later, you get the second vaccine," said Jeff Crosby, a physician's assistant at Pleasant Pediatrics.

The FDA says Pfizer kid-size doses appear to be highly effective in elementary-age children and will meet Tuesday to weigh the risks of myocarditis before granting emergency use approval.

"[Myocarditis is] pretty darn rare, and the vast majority of people who do experience myocarditis, it is very short-lived and they recover very well."

Phoenix-metro Pleasant Pediatrics says many parents have already scheduled vaccine appointments next month for their younger kids.

"If we make a recommendation for the COVID vaccine for your child, we're not recommending something we wouldn't also do for our kids," Crosby said.

Modern announced on Monday that its kid-sized dose appeared to be 90% effective in young kids, however, it hasn't been submitted to the FDA for approval yet.

"We're here to have conversations with parents. We know there's a lot of information online, some of it we do not believe to be accurate, so we just want patients to come have a conversation with us," Crosby said.

If the FDA grants emergency use authorization for Pfizer's kid-sized dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, then the CDC could grant its approval as early as Nov. 3.

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