Original article written by Maggie Fox for CNN Health
Drug maker Pfizer has plans to start testing its experimental coronavirus vaccine in children as young as 12. A team at Cincinnati Children's Hospital began vaccinating teenagers aged 16 and 17 in October, and will move to enroll 12-to 15-year-olds soon, said Dr. Robert Frenck, director of the Vaccine Research Center at the hospital. Dr. Frenck emphasizes the importance of finding a vaccine for children, stating that it will be critical to getting the virus under control. Furthermore, although coronavirus has a lower mortality rate for children, they can still develop serious illness and die. Already more than half a million children have been diagnosed with coronavirus in the US, and even if they do not develop serious symptoms, children are able to spread the disease to other more vulnerable people. Dr. Frenck believes this number is underestimating the actual number of children infected in the US, as their symptoms oftentimes mimic a cold. At the time this article was written, Frenck said more than 90 people have responded to an ad looking for volunteers to sign up teens for the trial.
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