Pfizer Covid vaccine was just 12% effective against omicron in kids 5 to 11, study finds

Nora Gossett, 7, reacts as she receives the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from Sophia Jan, MD, whereas her father Jeff Gossett, MD, holds her hand at Cohen Kids’s Medical Heart as vaccines have been authorized for youngsters aged 5-11, amid the coronavirus illness pandemic, in New Hyde Park, New York, November 4, 2021.

Andrew Kelly | Reuters

Pfizer and BioNTech’s two-dose Covid vaccine offered little or no safety for youngsters 5- to 11-years-old in the course of the wave of omicron an infection in New York, in keeping with a examine printed Monday.

The New York State Division of Well being discovered that the effectiveness of Pfizer’s vaccine towards Covid an infection plummeted from 68% to 12% for youngsters ages 5 to 11 because the omicron variant surged from Dec. 13 via Jan 24. Safety towards hospitalization on this age group dropped from 100% to 48% throughout the identical interval.

The examine has not but undergone peer evaluate, the tutorial gold customary. Scientists have been publishing the outcomes of their research earlier than evaluate as a result of urgency of the pandemic.

The staff of public well being officers who carried out the examine mentioned the dramatic drop in vaccine effectiveness amongst kids 5 to 11 years previous was doubtless as a result of decrease dosage they obtain. Youngsters on this age group obtain two 10 microgram photographs, whereas kids ages 12 to 17 obtain 30 microgram photographs.

The researchers in contrast 11- and 12-year-olds, who obtain completely different dosage ranges however have related physiology given that they are almost the identical age. The effectiveness of the vaccine towards an infection for 11-year-olds dropped to 11%, whereas the 2 larger dose photographs gave 12-year-olds 67% safety in the course of the week ending Jan. 30.

“Given fast lack of safety towards infections, these outcomes spotlight the continued significance of layered protections, together with masks sporting, for youngsters to stop an infection and transmission,” the general public well being officers wrote within the examine.

For kids ages 12- to 17-years-old, vaccine effectiveness towards an infection dropped from 66% to 51% from December via the tip of January. Safety towards hospitalization dropped from 85% to 73% for youngsters throughout the identical interval.

The info comes as New York Metropolis plans to finish its college masks mandate by March 7, and California is planning to elevate its masks mandate for faculties after March 11. State governments are easing mandates and restrictions as Covid infections decline dramatically after omicron swept the nation in December and January

Covid infections are down 91% from a pandemic excessive in January. The US reported a day by day common of almost 66,000 new infections on Sunday, in comparison with the greater than 802,000 on Jan. 15, in keeping with a CNBC evaluation of knowledge from Johns Hopkins College.

The US suffered a spike in hospitalizations of youngsters with Covid in the course of the omicron wave. The Meals and Drug Administration sought to fast-track Pfizer’s vaccine for youths aged six months via 4-years-old this month in response to the variety of kids hospitalized with Covid. Nonetheless, the FDA and Pfizer determined to place these plans on maintain after information on the primary two doses didn’t meet expectations. The FDA is now ready to see scientific trial information on a 3rd dose for the youngest children, which is anticipated in April.

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