By Dr. Max Gomez

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Pfizer announced some good news Wednesday in the push to get children back into classrooms and reach national herd immunity.

The pharmaceutical giant said its COVID vaccine is 100% effective for kids as young as 12 years old.

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As CBS2’s Dr. Max Gomez reported, the promising results came from the Pfizer-Biotech phase three trials in adolescents ages 12 to 15. It’s already authorized for 16-year-olds and up.

The trial include more than 2,200 adolescents 12 to 15 who received two doses of the adult vaccine three weeks apart or a placebo.

There were 18 cases of COVID in the placebo group, but none in the vaccinated group. The vaccinated group also produced much higher levels of antibodies, compared to older adolescents and young adults.

The vaccine had the same side effects in children as in adults – fever, malaise and body aches — but was generally well tolerated.


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Pfizer said it plans to apply for expanded emergency use authorization for this age group right away, which means empty classrooms could safely bustle again with vaccinations beginning for middle and high school students before the start of the next academic year.

The company also plans to test its vaccine in even younger children, paving the way for elementary students not long after.

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Dr. Max did share one note of caution: These results do not include detailed data from the trial and have not been peer-reviewed or published in a scientific journal.

AstraZeneca recently ran afoul of the FDA for supposedly cherry-picking its results in a press release, so these hopeful findings await full evaluation by the FDA.

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Dr. Max Gomez