On Thursday, a top advisor to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said children should be vaccinated against COVID-19, the infection caused by the coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2).
Dr. Paul Offit, Director of the Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, said, “It just seems silly to think that we’re not going to have to include children as part of that. They can suffer and be hospitalized and occasionally die.”
He said 300 children have died from COVID-19 so far.
Dr. Offit was speaking during the panel’s meeting discussing the use of COVID vaccines in children as young as 6 months old, according to CNBC.
He is a voting member of the FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee.
“We have variants that are becoming more contagious, which means you need a higher level of population immunity … for years if not decades,” explained Dr. Offit, who is a pediatrician specializing in infectious diseases, vaccines, immunology, and virology.
Citing the example of the polio vaccine, he said we still vaccinate children for polio every year despite having no single case of polio since the 1970s.
Nearly 4 million children have tested positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic began, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
Last week, over 16,000 new pediatric coronavirus cases were reported, the lowest since June 2020, according to the AAP. Less than 1% of all pediatric cases resulted in death.
Dr. Offit said, “I think come winter, we’re going to really see how well we’re doing in terms of population immunity. The notion that we are not going to have to vaccinate children going forward I think is wrong.”
The article was published on CNBC.