State preps for the approval of the pediatric Pfizer dose

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – The FDA’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee has endorsed Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for children 5 to 11. 

Health officials claim it could be available to this age range as early as the first week of November. 

The ADH says an additional 99,000 doses on the way to the Natural State to vaccinate the 5-11 age range once it is approved. 

However, when it comes to disturbing the vaccine it won’t be a rush to the pharmacy like the previous rounds. 

Col. Robert Ator is the coordinator of the state vaccine rollout, and he says the approval of the Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for children 5 to 11 has been on his radar for weeks. 

So he’s been working closely with the White House to make sure Arkansas has what it needs. 

20,000 vaccines will make their way to Northwest Arkansas. Once here, the Northwest Arkansas Council will be used as a hub to move the doses around to surrounding hospitals, clinics, and pediatric offices. 

“The council has been able to come to the table and say we can provide staffing and vaccine to deliver what you might not have,” says Ryan Cork with the Northwest Arkansas Council. 

Unlike the previous waves of the vaccine which relyed heavily on pharmacy staff, this round will be going primarily to pediatric staff. 

“The initial wave of vaccine is going to be LHUs, the second wave will be going to VFC providers, vaccine for children providers there will be 300 of those,” says Col. Ator. 

Cork believes the distributions method we’ve been successful with recently, such as taking the vaccine to where people already are, will also be helpful when it comes to kids.

“Examples might be our partnership with the Amazeum here in Bentonville, or partnering with schools, private or public that would like to have the vaccine available within their walls,” says Cork. 

Having been recommended by the committee, the FDA will now take the vote under consideration. 

Advisers at the CDC are now scheduled to meet and discuss this next week.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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