MINOT, N.D. – The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is currently available for those 16 and up, but with the recent extension of trials, 12-to-15-year olds may soon become eligible to get their shots.
For Alexandra Deufel, her child’s safety is the biggest priority.
“He has asthma a little bit, not terrible asthma but anything that we can prevent from happening,” said Alexandra Deufel, a Minot parent.
When a COVID-19 vaccine is available for her son Julian, she says she will have him get it.
“He’ll turn 12 by the end of the year in September and we’re hoping for it soon, at least at the beginning of the school year,” said Deufel.
She may not have to wait long. Out of the 2,260 kids enrolled in a Pfizer vaccine trial in the U.S., the company has seen a 100% efficacy and robust antibody response.
“Pfizer has released their preliminary data for 12 and older, we expect that the FDA will expand that emergency use authorization for Pfizer by the end of May, if not sooner,” said Kylie Hall, a project coordinator with North Dakota State University’s Center for Immunization Research and Education.
Hall added that it could be a key component on stopping the spread of the virus.
“We can prevent a lot of disease and morbidity with vaccinating 16 and older, but that childhood piece is really important too,” said Hall.
Another parent said that while they may not be fearful of their child getting COVID, they want to make sure the rest of the family is safe.
“My parents are getting older. I’ve known people that have immune deficiencies that can’t be vaccinated. The best thing we can do as a community is to vaccinate everyone that can be vaccinated,” said Chris Asmundson, a Minot parent.
Moderna is also working on youth vaccine trials, however they have not yet released their data.
Pfizer is currently looking into vaccinating children as young as six months and should have the preliminary data by the end of the year.