Vaccine trial for children under 12 years old available in Houston

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Pfizer's research of its COVID-19 vaccine effect on children between the ages of 12 and 15 has given other health experts the green light to look into vaccinating children 6 months to 11 years old.

The pharmaceutical corporation announced last week that its vaccine is 100% safe for children 12 and up.

Now, Dr. Flor Munoz, associate professor of pediatrics and infectious disease at Baylor College of Medicine, and her team are leading a trial in Houston that'll focus on dosing kids younger than 12 years old.

Researchers will conduct what's called Phases 2 and 3 and will ask volunteers who meet certain criteria. Some of the group will be given the vaccine and a smaller number of participants will be given a placebo.

They will then offer the vaccine to all children once the study is completed.

Dr. Munoz said all of the vaccines are under emergency use authorization so collecting as much information now during the trials is crucial.

At some point, each company will need full authorization to make these vaccines accessible even after the pandemic is over.

"Eventually all of that information is going to help to get an official, formal licensure of the vaccine," said Dr. Munoz. "It's possible that of these vaccines, the ones that we are using under emergency use could also be fully licensed this year because of all the data that is accumulating."

RELATED: Progress in the fight against the coronavirus is coming, but Texas is a long way from herd immunity

Dr. Munoz said it's important to get children vaccinated to reach that community protection that is needed in order to get back to normal.

SEE RELATED STORY: Texas eligibility expands but health experts fear impact of vaccine hesitancy

Follow Brhe Berry on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Copyright © 2021 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.