The Timeline to a Vaccine for Your Kids.

Approved Vaccines

The Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine has already received emergency use authorization (EUA) from the FDA for ages 16 and up. If your child is age 16 or older and is an essential worker or has cystic fibrosis, sickle cell disease, Down syndrome, or another severe chronic illness, you should contact their doctor to get the Pfizer vaccine. Moderna has not applied to the FDA to authorize their vaccine for anyone under 18 yet. 

Ongoing Trials in Children

It’s essential to establish that a vaccine is safe and effective in adults before testing it in children. Now that we’ve done that, the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are now both in Phase 3 trials for children ages 12 and up. We should find out how effective and safe they are for kids in that age group within the next few months. Pfizer hopes to begin trials in younger children in late January 2021. There are also many other vaccine candidates currently in development that will likely be tested in children in the coming months. 

When will Vaccines be Authorized for Pediatric Use?

If the Phase 3 clinical trials show that the vaccine is safe and works well, then a vaccine could potentially receive FDA emergency use authorization for kids ages 12 and up in late spring or early summer of 2021. Authorization for younger kids could follow a few months later. With more vaccine candidates working their way through the approval process and more resources being mobilized for the distribution process, hopefully it won’t be long before everyone in your family can get a COVID-19 vaccine..


Last update: January 27, 2021 7:00pm ET
Science review: GSN, ERS