Over 60,000 doses of Pfizer-BioNTech’s pediatric COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to New York City children between the ages of five and 11, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday.
Out of those doses, 22,500 have been given at a temporary school-based vaccination site the first of which began administering the inoculation to students Monday, Nov. 8. All 1,070 school sites serving children in that age group will offer the vaccine to students for at least one day with families able to check school vaccination schedules on the Department of Education website.
Officials estimate that the measure will allow 400,000 children ages five to 11 to at least get the first shot of the vaccine. City health officials will not administer second doses of Pfizer-BioNTech pediatric COVID-19 vaccine to younger children but will work with families on scheduling second dose appointments at city-run vaccination sites or pharmacies.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency use authorization on the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19’s use on children in the age group at the end of October and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a recommendation that children ages five to 11 receive both companies’ vaccine early this month.
Younger children receiving the Pfizer-BioNTech pediatric COVID vaccine get a smaller dosage of the inoculation, roughly a third the amount an adult receives, in two shots administered about three weeks apart. The vaccine’s efficacy in preventing symptomatic COVID-19 in younger children is about the same as it is in adults, around 91%, according to the CDC.
Earlier this fall, City officials also set up temporary vaccination sites at all public school sites serving children 12 and up but turnout among the families of younger children has been greater than that of older students.
“Parents have been turning out in big numbers to get their younger children vaccinated at schools,” said de Blasio. “So, we will be doing more with our schools.”
Over 10,000 children between the ages of five and 11 received the first shot of the COVID-19 vaccine during the first two days that school-based vaccination were offered a public school, officials said last week.
Vaccination rates among older children are slowly but steadily increasing with officials reporting Monday now 80% of all New York City children between the ages of 12 and 17 are at least partially vaccinated, a 2% increase from last week.