Children ages 12-15 can now get the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in NYS

Coronavirus

Registered Nurse Morgan James loads a syringe with a dose of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine at the Blood Bank of Alaska in Anchorage on March 19, 2021. – Alaska became the first state in the country last week to open vaccination access to everyone over the age of 16 and has fully vaccinated 16 percent of the state’s population, the highest rate in the country. (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) — Governor Andrew Cuomo authorized COVID-19 vaccination providers in the state to vaccinate people ages 12 to 15-years-old with the Pfizer vaccine. The news coming in a Wednesday evening announcement from his office.

The governor’s decision comes the same day the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention endorsed Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for kids 12 to 15. Cuomo said he instructed New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker alongside the New York State Clinical Advisory Task Force to conduct a review of vaccine data to ensure its effectiveness and safety.

Governor Cuomo accepted their findings and authorized all providers registered in the state COVID-19 vaccination program to expand eligibility immediately.

Counties in Western New York were waiting for this decision by the governor, preparing to expand their vaccination clinics to include kids of that age group. Local school districts we’ve spoken with say they’re planning clinics for eligible students to have the chance to get vaccinated.

Read his full statement below:

“Today the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention endorsed the use of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents 12 to 15 years of age. That decision followed a thorough review of data and FDA’s expansion of the emergency use authorization for this vaccine earlier this week. To further ensure the safety and effectiveness of New York State’s vaccination program, I directed Dr. Zucker and the New York State Clinical Advisory Task Force to conduct a concurrent review. I accepted their recommendation and am authorizing all providers enrolled in the NYS COVID-19 vaccination program to expand eligibility for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to people in the 12-15 age group, effective immediately.

“Children under the age of 18 now account for more than 20 percent of new cases in this country, and vaccine authorization for a younger population will allow the state to continue its tremendous progress towards winning the war against COVID. More than 17 million vaccine doses have been administered in New York State to date.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo (D-NY)

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Patrick Ryan is a digital producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2020. See more of his work here.

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