SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- Developing news Monday as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents and teens ages 12-15 for emergency use.
This is the first shot to get approval for anyone under age 16.
Comments from our Western Mass News viewers on Facebook are somewhat mixed, but there is a slight majority with negative reactions. We took your concerns straight to a local expert to get you answers.
“I’m a little on the fence about it. I’m a little nervous honestly to get vaccinated myself,” Springfield resident Kira Moran said.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents and teens ages 12-15 for emergency use, on Monday. This is the first vaccine to get the green light for anyone under 16 years old.
“I’m just a little bit nervous, and a little bit nervous I get my kids vaccinated as well,” Moran said.
Other Western Mass News viewers took to Facebook to voice their concerns. Reactions overall seem to be mixed, but there is a slight majority of people who are not thrilled with the FDA’s decision.
The US Food and Drug Administration has expanded the emergency use authorization for Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine to include people ages 12 to 15.
We took your concerns straight to a local expert for answers.
“Studies show the vaccine is 100 percent effective in this age group so I think that itself is a pretty big deal,” Western New England University Associate Immunology Professor Clinton Mathias said.
Mathias said while some parents are concerned, this authorization is a big step in trying to reach the end of the pandemic.
“All of us have been worried about our kids for a really long time, and so I think this will give them the opportunity and for parents as well to feel that kids are protected,” Mathias said.
Mathias said the timing in the announcement is key, as many parents debate future plans for their children.
“There're still a lot of parents who are fearful about sending their kids back to school full-time in the fall, even participating in summer camps and outdoor activities,” Mathias said.
He said the vaccine is safe and effective, and he thinks normalcy will come even sooner with yet another group of people eligible for a shot.
“I think it’ll be a big sense of relief if more of the kids in the country are vaccinated,” Mathias explained.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee is scheduled to meet on Wednesday to vote on whether they will recommend the use of the vaccine in this age group.