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Hospitals prepping for moment COVID-19 vaccine is approved for children

Pfizer vaccine for children
Posted at 5:52 PM, Oct 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-27 22:30:02-04

CINCINNATI — Hospitals and clinics are already stocking up on Pfizer vaccines, measured into smaller doses and capped with an orange lid instead of purple, readying themselves for the moment the shot is approved for children.

Cincinnati Children's Hospital expects their delivery of the vials next week.

An FDA panel unanimously voted on Tuesday to formally recommend that children as young as 5 be authorized to receive Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine under emergency use authorization.

"We still have children in the hospital," said Dr. Patricia Manning, Children's Hospital's chief of staff. "We still have patients in the ICU. So, we are really excited about being able to afford this level of protection now to younger children."

Hamilton County Public Health has recorded dwindling numbers in COVID-19 infections overall, but the positivity rate among children remains high: Manning said in the Greater Cincinnati region, it's around 8%, two points higher than other age groups.

New training will also be coming for medical staff who may be giving the shots to smaller children.

"Children sometimes don't like to get vaccines," said Greg Kesterman, Hamilton County Public Health commissioner. "Sometimes it's scary and a little more tricky. So we're making sure we provide training to all of our staff."

In order for children to receive the vaccine, consent forms must be signed by parents. In Ohio, clinics that are not based in schools will also require a parent or guardian to be physically present for young children to get shots.