Report: COVID-19 vaccine for children could be available by end of year

As the delta variant takes hold, anxiety is rising along with cases. That’s especially true for parents who are sending children too young to be vaccinated back to school.

Any news about a timeline is something parents want to hear.

Katy Greenleaf gave KIRO 7 a direct answer when we asked about her daughter getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

“We will definitely get our youngest vaccinated as soon as we possibly can,” Greenleaf said. “It’s partly for her safety but it’s more for the safety of everybody else. There are people that can’t get vaccinated.”

On Sunday, former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb, who is now on Pfizer’s board, went on “Face the Nation” and suggested the company could apply in October to get approval for a vaccine for children as young as 5.

“So if Pfizer files the application at some point in October, that puts you on a timeline that it could be available, authorized at some point in November, late November, maybe early December. So that again puts you on a time frame that you could start rolling out these vaccinations before the end of the year,” Gottlieb said.

Full-time, in-person school starts in the Seattle area this week, with children under 12 unable to be vaccinated. They will be required to wear masks inside.

“They’re going to be in school around other kids. I want them to be as safe as possible,” parent Casey Dooley said.

Dooley said she looks forward to her children getting vaccinated.

Parent Shannon Evans said she has not got the vaccine herself yet and that her daughter is also hesitant.

“I don’t think we’d be the first ones in the door, but within the first few months that they’ve opened it for the children, I’d move forward,” said Evans.

For Greenleaf, the need for more vaccinations is clear as she hears from her husband, a nurse in a local emergency room, about rising cases of the delta variant.

“If somebody here was seriously injured, and they tried to go to the ER, it is full of COVID patients right now. It is full of COVID patients,” Greenleaf said.