Next week brings a marathon of hearings as the U.S. decides whether to open COVID-19 vaccinations to kids under 5.
On Wednesday, both Moderna and Pfizer will argue their case. Each company aims to offer a different dose and number of shots. If the Food and Drug Administration authorizes one or both type of shot, there's still another question: Should all tots get vaccinated or just those at high risk?
Kids under 5 are the only group not yet eligible for COVID-19 vaccination in the U.S. If all the steps fall into place, the shots should be available later this month.
Polling shows that most parents do not appear enthusiastic about vaccinating their children.
A poll released by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 18% of parents of children under age 5 plan to get their kids vaccinated “right away.” A plurality, 38%, said they will “wait and see.” The poll found that 11% of parents would only vaccinate their children if required, and 27% said they would “definitely not” vaccinate their children.
The survey consisted of 1,899 adults conducted from April 12-26.
The Biden administration said it has 10 million low-dose COVID-19 vaccines ready to be distributed throughout the U.S. The White House said vaccines would be available from children’s hospitals to local pharmacies.
Nearly 18 million children are yet to be eligible for COVID-19 vaccination.
Overall, 70.9% of Americans ages 5 and up are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, with the highest percentage of those vaccinated being seniors. According to CDC data, more than 91 percent of those ages 65 and over are fully vaccinated.
Eligible children, on the other hand, have been lagging with vaccination rates. Just 29.2% of children ages 5-11 are fully vaccinated.