The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) advisory committee will meet tomorrow to determine whether to grant Emergency Use Authorization for COVID vaccines for younger children, likely those 5 to 11 years old.
You can watch the FDA advisory committee meeting tomorrow below — Thursday, June 10 from 8:30 a.m. – 3:40 p.m. ET:
Last month, the FDA expanded Pfizer’s Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to include 12- to 15-year-olds, who are now receiving the vaccine.
“We are at a crossroads,” said Mary Holland, Children’s Health Defense president and general counsel. “Governments around the world are seizing authority away from parents to make life-and-death medical decisions for children. These laws and policies are reckless, unethical and illegal. Parents, not government, must make medical decisions for their children.”
Pfizer and Moderna this week predicted children as young as 5 could be eligible for COVID vaccines by early September, as both companies complete trials.
Adding to the urgency is news that many key cities — including Philadelphia, San Francisco, District of Columbia and Seattle — are now asserting the extraordinary, unprecedented authority to vaccinate children as young as 11 without parental consent or even parental knowledge.
The FDA has received three different petitions — Children’s Health Defense, Informed Consent Action Network and a group of 27 prominent health experts and scientists — asking the agency to restrict COVID vaccines for children, or to suspend all use of the vaccines until further safety studies have been completed.
Some of the petition authors will likely speak at the meeting tomorrow.
In an op-ed published Tuesday in The BMJ, four of the authors of the petition from 27 experts, writing on behalf of the group, said:
“The message of our petition is ‘slow down and get the science right — there is no legitimate reason to hurry to grant a license to a coronavirus vaccine.’ We believe the existing evidence base — both pre- and post-authorization — is simply not mature enough at this point to adequately judge whether clinical benefits outweigh the risks in all populations.”