Wednesday, June 22, 2022 2:37 pm
The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup Sunday completed its review of the federal process and has unanimously concluded that the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are safe and effective for children as young as 6 months old. The Workgroup provided its confirmation to the governors of Washington, California, Nevada and Oregon this afternoon.
The Moderna two-dose vaccine series and the Pfizer three-dose vaccine series are now available to children as young as 6 months old. The Washington State Department of Health last week said once vaccines were approved they will begin supplying healthcare providers with vaccines for children ages 6 months to 4 years.
On Friday, June 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the use of the vaccines in children as young as 6 months old, and the CDC affirmed that decision on Saturday. The Workgroup reviewed the federal decisions on Saturday and affirmed them today.
The Workgroup thoroughly reviewed safety and efficacy data for the vaccines. The Workgroup found that completion of either vaccine series produced antibody levels similar to those achieved in individuals aged 16-25 years. Observed vaccine reactions among infants aged 6-12 months and children aged 1 through 5 years were consistent with reactions to other vaccines routinely recommended for these age groups.
The Workgroup concluded that the benefits of completing either vaccine series substantially outweigh any known or likely risks. Immunization can be expected to reduce the numbers of COVID-19-related serious illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths in young children while facilitating their participation in normal educational, social and recreational activities.