In the race toward herd immunity, Pfizer announced Wednesday its COVID-19 vaccine is safe and 100 percent effective in preventing the illness in kids between the ages of 12 and 15.
Dr. Matt Anderson, senior medical director of primary care at UW Health, hopes to see Pfizer move ahead and request Emergency Use Authorization from the Food and Drug Administration.
"Because it's going to be important to reduce transmission. We know that those teens are an important age group for that so getting more shots in arms will definitely be good for that population getting people back in school as well," Anderson said.
There were 2,260 kids between 12-15 were enrolled in the company's vaccine trial. In a press release, Pfizer said about half got the shots while others got a placebo.
Pfizer reported there were 18 cases of COVID-19 in the placebo group versus none in the vaccinated group. Side effects were generally consistent with those seen in the 16-25 age group.
"The more people who can get it the better for sure," said parent Tony Gnau.
Gnau's daughter isn't quite 12, but if research shows the vaccine is safe for even younger kids he would have no problem with it.
"We need to get the kids vaccinated too. They're in school now for the most part in most communities, but if we can get them vaccinated and have them back in school where they don't have to wear masks and all that stuff I mean that would just be fantastic," Gnau said.
Pfizer said it plans to submit its data to the FDA as a proposed amendment to its Emergency Use Authorization with the hope of starting to vaccinate this age group before the next school year.
Pfizer is also studying how well the vaccine works in kids from 6 months to 11 years old.