The number of cases in America is rising even among children. The Food and Drug Administration in the United States approved a booster shot for the COVID-19 vaccine in mid-May 2022. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that children between 5 and 11 years old receive a booster shot.
Parents often have questions about booster shots and safety. Debbie-Ann Shirley is a University of Virginia pediatric infectious diseases specialist. She answers your questions. She answers most of the questions she receives about booster shots and COVID-19 in children.
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1. What’s the significance of booster shots for children’s health and well-being?
COVID-19 is more common in children than it is in adults. However, severe cases can still occur. More than 15,000 children aged 5-11 years were admitted to hospitals for COVID-19. 180 children also lost their lives. 87% of children between 5 and 11 years old who were admitted to the hospital because of the transmissible Omicron virus were not vaccinated during the winter surge.
Multisystem Inflammatory syndrome in Children (MISC) is a rare, but serious condition that affects children aged 5 to 11. There have been 3800 MISC cases in the 5- to 11-year-old age group. 93% of people who were not up-to-date on their vaccinations were not up-to-date.
Some vaccines, including COVID-19, lose effectiveness over time. Booster shots can use to boost your immune system. You will need booster shots for many vaccines, including diphtheria and tetanus vaccines.
It has a demonstrate that boosters for adults and adolescents can increase protection from waning. Similar side effects were seen for the first series. After the third COVID-19 dosage, there is less chance of developing myocarditis.
2. How does immunity fare to Covid-19 initial shots?
Children aged between 5 and 11 years were able to respond similarly to the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine. This was based on a clinical trial that was use to inform the FDA about the initial authorization of shots in October 2021.
Studies showed that shots had been approved and vaccine effectiveness fell rapidly in the 5-to-11-year-old age group due to the omicron spike. The shots protected against serious illness and hospitalization.
Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome has been shown to be a strong protection for children who need to vaccinate.
3. What is the Third Dose Children Need?
A booster dose of 10 micrograms was administer to children aged 5-11 years. The booster dose is one-third of the dose given to adolescents or adults in the primary series. There were no safety concerns. Even though the third shot raised antibodies against the omicron variant, it was not harmful to children under 401. This vaccine seems to increase immunity and is comparable to older vaccines.
You can give the booster dose up to five years following the first shot. As of May 20, 22, less than one third of children aged between five and eleven years had received two shots. Around 8 million school-age children had access to the booster. They could also protect, which could help reduce disruptions in summer activities and school.
Children with weak immune systems who may now receive a booster shot or a fourth dose of COVID-19. This can be done as soon as three to four months after the last dose.
4. Is the Covid-19 vaccine safe?
Over 18.5 million doses were administered in the 5-to-11-year-old range. The COVID-19 vaccine has had few side effects in children, with the exception of pain at injection sites. Side effects include fatigue, headaches, and muscle aches.
According to reports, most myocarditis cases following vaccinations respond quickly to medications and rest. The rates of myocarditis in children aged 5-11 years were lower than in teenagers. Myocarditis can occur at any age.
5. What about children younger than 5 years?
COVID-19 vaccines are now available for children aged 6 months to 5 years. Pfizer published new data on this age group in May 2022. According to Pfizer, three shots produced strong antibodies and there was no safety concern.
Preliminary data indicated that the series was 80% effective in preventing COVID-19 infections. Moderna released data in April 2022 which showed that two doses were effective at stimulating positive antibodies. They were well tolerated by children under six years of age.
The FDA will meet in June 2022 to discuss low-dose Moderna/Pfizer vaccines for this population.
The FDA will approve it. If the CDC recommends to FDA that the FDA uses it to more than 20,000,000 children 6 months to 5 years old in the U.S.