Q: Is the pediatric vaccine effective and safe? Has it been tested?
A: Yes. Moderna and Pfizer were required by the FDA to prove that the vaccine was as effective in the youngest age group as it is in the adult age group through a process called immunobridging. The clinical trials found that the antibody numbers were comparable to the older age group with a full series of vaccination, thus proving the pediatric vaccine just as effective as the adult vaccine. Along with being effective, the pediatric vaccines are also safe. Data from clinical trials including thousands of children under age 6 showed no serious side effects and no new safety concerns.
Q: What are the possible side effects for children?
A: During clinical trials for the pediatric vaccine, side effects were minimal:
For 6-23 month olds, irritability (65% Moderna vs. 44% Pfizer) and drowsiness (40% Moderna vs. 20% Pfizer) were most common.
For 2-5 year olds, pain at injection site were most common (60-70% Moderna vs. 27% Pfizer), followed by fatigue.
1 in 4 children experienced a fever with the Moderna vaccine, and side effects were more common after the second dose. 1 in 20 experienced a fever with the Pfizer vaccine. Side effects were more common after the third dose.
Q: If my child has already had COVID-19, do they need to be vaccinated?
A: Antibodies from having COVID-19 only last for around 3 months. After that period of time, antibodies from having the illness will no longer provide protection. Being fully vaccinated provides better protection for your children. Speak with your child's nurse or pediatrician to determine the best time for your child to get vaccinated.
Q: I have been vaccinated and still caught COVID-19. If there is still a chance that my child can still get COVID-19, why should they be vaccinated?
A: Breakthrough infections are not uncommon with any vaccine. Vaccines provide protection from the possibility of severe illness when infected with the virus and make symptoms minor compared to an infection in an unvaccinated individual.