by Photo via Unsplash authorities announced Friday that Moderna’s Coronavirus vaccine for children five and younger are effective in preventing infection without causing side effects. 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will decide whether to grant Moderna’s emergency authorization request next week. According to the agency, Moderna’s vaccine was 51 percent effective in preventing symptomatic infection in children 6 months to 2 years old and 37 percent effective in children two to five years old

Pfizer and its partner, BioNTech, produced a three-dose vaccine for children under 5, which the agency will consider.  

The roughly 18 million children under 5 are the only group in the United States not eligible for COVID-19 shots. Those 5 or over can receive a Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

The FDA said it will release its analysis of Pfizer’s application to vaccinate the youngest age group on Monday.  Pfizer seeks authorization for its vaccine, which has one-tenth the strength of adult shots. Moderna’s regime includes two doses at one-quarter strength of adult doses.

Pfizer said its clinical trial suggested that its vaccine was 80 percent effective, but the trial was based on 10 cases. More than twice that number is required to assess the efficacy of the shots.

The document released by the FDA , exceeding100 pages, will serve as a basis for the authorization discussions next week.

The White House outlined its plan to make the first vaccination as early as the week of June 20. The Administration said it has made 10 million vaccine doses available for states, Tribes, territories, community health centers, federal pharmacy partners, and others to pre-order. 

“If the FDA authorizes a vaccine, the Administration will immediately begin shipping doses across the country—and will launch an effort to ensure that parents can get their youngest children vaccinated easily,” the Biden Administration wrote in a statement. 

According to the White House, 85 percent of children under the age of five live within five miles of a potential vaccination site.

“If FDA authorizes and CDC recommends one or both of the COVID-19 vaccines for this age group, it would be a historic milestone in the nation’s fight against the virus—and would mean nearly every American is eligible for the protection that vaccination provides,” the Biden Administration wrote. 

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