CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — As soon as this week, 28 million children between ages 5 and 11 may be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.
An FDA advisory committee is scheduled to meet on Tuesday to discuss whether to recommend authorization for the Pfizer vaccine for kids 5 to 11.
Kids make up about a quarter of all COVID-19 cases in the U.S.
Nationwide data shows, COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths are all declining. Health experts point to the vaccine.
"If we add children to that mix, we can get our numbers way higher up and hopefully prevent anymore variants from coming," said pediatrician Dr. Jennifer Shu.
But Pfizer officials will not only have to convince FDA vaccine advisers for emergency-use authorization.
Ultimately, it's up to parents of kids ages 5 to 11 to allow them to get the vaccine.
A recent Kaiser Family Foundation survey in September found about one-third of parents in that age range say they would take a wait-and-see approach and another third of parents say they'd let their kids get the vaccine right away.
If the FDA and the CDC authorize the vaccine, then kids ages 5 to 11 could potentially be fully vaccinated by the winter holidays.