CDC Signs off on COVID Vaccines for Children Under 5

June 19, 2022 by Dan McCue
CDC Signs off on COVID Vaccines for Children Under 5
Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

ATLANTA — The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Saturday backed an advisory committee’s recommendation that will allow parents with children under 5 years of age to have their kids vaccinated against COVID-19.

Dr. Rochelle Walensky’s endorsement was the last step needed before very young children could begin getting vaccinated. 

Her decision came after  a CDC advisory committee earlier on Saturday unanimously voted to recommend Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines for children under 5. 

Vaccinations for children aged six months and older will begin this coming week.


“Together, with science leading the charge, we have taken another important step forward in our nation’s fight against COVID-19,” Walensky said in a written statement. “We know millions of parents and caregivers are eager to get their young children vaccinated, and with today’s decision, they can.”

As previously reported by The Well News, the Food and Drug Administration gave its approval of giving the vaccine to younger children last week, explaining that its review found them to be safe.

Pfizer’s vaccine is rolling out with a three-dose schedule, while Moderna’s is two doses. 

According to the FDA, two doses of Moderna were 51% effective in children 6 months to 2 years old, and 37% in children ages 2 through 5.   

Among those cheering word of the CDC’s followup approval on Saturday was President Joe Biden, who called the agency’s decision “a monumental step forward in our nation’s fight against the virus, with virtually every American now eligible for the protections that COVID-19 vaccines provide.”


Also joining the chorus of approval was Education Secretary Miguel Cardona who estimated that about 20 million babies, toddlers and preschoolers will now be eligible to get the vaccine.

“This is a historic milestone in our nation’s recovery from the pandemic, and it will provide so many parents and families who have been waiting for this moment with more peace of mind about keeping their children safe and healthy,” he said in a written statement.

“The Biden-Harris administration will take a whole-of-government approach to ensuring that every parent and caregiver who wants to secure a vaccine for their child is able to do so through pediatricians, primary care doctors, and other trusted health care providers, including community health centers and pharmacies. These vaccines are safe and will help save lives,” he added.

District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowers said the city will begin offering COVID vaccines to children aged 6 months and over beginning on Tuesday, though she said the initial supply of the vaccine would be limited.

She urged parents wanting to have their children vaccinated to visit the city COVID Center website to locate a vaccination location near them in each of the municipality’s eight wards.

“The pediatric vaccines will be available at all District COVID Centers, health clinics, and doctor’s offices. The vaccine will also be available at select pharmacies for children three and up,” she said, noting that the city’s health department is recommending that all eligible children get vaccinated.

That message was echoed by the CDC’s Walensky.


“I encourage parents and caregivers with questions to talk to their doctor, nurse, or local pharmacist to learn more about the benefits of vaccinations and the importance of protecting their children by getting them vaccinated,” she said.

Dan can be reached at [email protected] and at https://twitter.com/DanMcCue.

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