Increased vaccine demand expected with younger kids now eligible


PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — With kids 12 and up now eligible to get vaccinated in Oregon, the state is preparing for an inevitable increase in demand.

The Oregon Health Authority knows demand will ramp up, as they’ve already seen eager parents trying to get their kids shots this week. The OHA has been working to ensure the distribution of the Pfizer vaccine throughout the state so that any eligible individual who wants to get vaccinated has access to one.

Only the Pfizer vaccine has been approved for children 12-15. Johnson & Johnson and Moderna vaccines are still only allowed for those aged 18 and up.

As pre-teens start their vaccination process, more parents are becoming curious when younger children could get vaccinated. The future of any vaccine use to even younger age groups will depend on science and outcomes from clinical trials. 

Pfizer says it is planning to seek approval to vaccinate children as young as two years old against the coronavirus.

The pharmaceutical company’s chairman and chief executive officer, Dr. Albert Bourla, said on a quarterly earnings call Tuesday that he expects to request emergency use authorization from the United States Food and Drug Administration to make kids ages 2-11 eligible for Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine in September. Bourla said that he also plans to request emergency use authorization for children aged six months to two years old between October and December.

OHA will have to wait and see what studies show us and any future scientific review before they can comment.

Pfizer vaccine access will be available through a variety of channels, including pharmacies, clinics, urgent care sites and mass vaccination sites. Additionally, many communities are offering vaccinations at school.

Visit OHA’s website or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for information about how to find vaccine appointments or to find a vaccination site with walk-in availability. You can also schedule an appointment by calling the phone number on the vaccine provider’s website or by calling 2-1-1.

Remember, these vaccines are free — health insurance and identification are not required. OHA has resources available for parents and people under 18.

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