COVID vaccine rollout for U.S. children close after CDC panel vote

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Saturday recommended COVID-19 vaccines for children as young as six months, allowing a nationwide rollout to start next week. 

The CDC's move came after a panel of advisers to the institution voted earlier on Saturday to recommend COVID-19 vaccines for those children. 

"We know millions of parents and caregivers are eager to get their young children vaccinated, and with today's decision, they can," said Rochelle Walensky, the CDC director, in a statement. 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday authorized Moderna Inc's (MRNA.O) shot for children aged six months to five years.. 

and Pfizer-BioNTech's (PFE.N), vaccine for children aged six months to four years. Pfizer's vaccine is already authorized for children over the age of five. 

"This infection kills children and we have an opportunity to prevent that," Beth Bell, one of the doctors on the advisory panel, said following the vote. "Here is an opportunity to prevent a known risk." 

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said in a statement the move was a "historic milestone." 

President Joe Biden's administration plans to roll out the vaccines to the under-five age groups as early as next week. 

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