Advisory panel recommends Pfizer vaccine for kids ages 5 to 11, final approval due soon

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FILE – This October 2021, photo provided by Pfizer shows kid-size doses of its COVID-19 vaccine in Puurs, Belgium. (Pfizer via AP, File)

An influential advisory panel voted Tuesday that all children ages 5 to 11 should get Pfizer’s pediatric COVID-19 shots, putting the U.S. on the brink of a major expansion of vaccinations — and a final decision is expected within hours.

The Food and Drug Administration already has OK’d kid-size doses — just a third of the amount given to teens and adults — as safe and effective for the younger age group.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention formally recommends who should receive FDA-cleared vaccines, and its advisers decided Pfizer’s shots should be opened to all 28 million children ages 5 to 11.

If the CDC’s director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, signs off, it will mark the first opportunity for Americans under 12 to get the powerful protection of any COVID-19 vaccine.

Shots into little arms could begin this week, as Pfizer already is packing and shipping the first orders, millions of doses, to states and pharmacies to be ready.

Parents who may have questions about giving the vaccine to their children can submit those questions here. Then Wednesday morning at 9 a.m., CBS4’s Angela Brauer will be joined by Dr. Veronica Vernon from Butler University to answer those questions during a Facebook Live.

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