May 13, 2021
Dear CareMount Parents and Guardians,
Thank you for trusting your child’s care to CareMount Pediatrics and Family Medicine. We pride ourselves in delivering immunizations according to recommendations approved by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We are pleased to be able to offer children 12 years of age and older access to COVID-19 vaccination using the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. This vaccine was previously authorized for people ages 16 and older, and trials now show it to be 100% effective in children 12 through 15 years of age with no serious safety concerns.
Due to the high level of safety and efficacy against COVID-19, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted emergency use authorization and approval was given by the ACIP. The vaccine will be given to adolescents in two doses three weeks apart, the same as for adults. The most common side effects in adolescents were pain at the injection site, tiredness, headache, chills, muscle pain, fever and joint pain, consistent with trials in older teens and adults. Because we do not know how long antibodies last after COVID-19 infection and reports of people having more severe second bouts of infection, the vaccine can be beneficial in boosting a person’s existing immunity from prior infection.
The approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine allows for a younger population to be protected from COVID-19, bringing us closer to returning to a sense of normalcy and to ending the pandemic. We appreciate that COVID-19 disruptions have caused a significant amount of stress for you, your family, and children. Our youngest generations have shouldered heavy burdens over the past year, and the vaccine is a hopeful sign that they will be able to begin to experience all the activities that are so important for their health and development. We welcome your questions and partnering with you to discuss how we can work together to maximize your child’s health.
Stay safe and be well,
Jill Brodsky, MD, MBA
Chair, CareMount Department of Pediatrics