ATLANTA (Sept. 21, 2020)–Delays in starting COVID-19 vaccine clinical trials in children will prolong overall recovery from the global pandemic, according to a new paper published in Clinical Infectious Diseases.
In addition to direct medical benefits of immune protection, availability of a COVID-19 vaccine for children could facilitate return to school and other activities—critical for their well-being, the authors say.
The role of children in transmitting COVID-19 has been underappreciated, and the number of deaths among children due to COVID-19 is edging close to the average number of influenza-related deaths among children during recent flu seasons, the authors point out.
“Given the potential direct and indirect benefits of pediatric vaccination, implementation of Phase II clinical trials for COVID-19 vaccines should begin now,” the paper states.
The lead author on the paper is Evan Anderson, MD, a Pediatric Infectious Diseases Specialist at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, and Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine. Dr. Anderson is also a Principal Investigator at Emory University for the Moderna-National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases trial of the investigational vaccine mRNA-1273.
Co-authors on the Clinical Infectious Diseases paper include pediatricians from University of Maryland, Vanderbilt University, Cincinatti Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Baylor College of Medicine and Stony Brook University.
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