WH: COVID vaccines for kids under 5 could begin as early as week of June 20

During the White House COVID-19 response team briefing on Thursday, coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha said that pending approval by the FDA and the CDC, COVID vaccinations for children under 5 years old could begin as early as the week of June 20.

Video transcript

- Now, today, we want to provide an update on a topic that I know many parents and grandparents are focused on, the potential for the first COVID-19 vaccines for kids under five. We have waited a long time for this moment. More than two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, and after nearly 18 months since the first set of vaccines became available for adults, we are on the cusp of having safe, highly effective vaccines for kids under five. Now, we want to lay out today the work we're doing to make sure parents can easily get access to those vaccines.

Let me start off by making one very important point. We are not here to prejudge the outcome of the independent, science-driven process that is being led both by FDA and the CDC. The FDA's advisory committee is going to be meeting next week on Tuesday, June 14, and Wednesday, June 15 to review the data that was submitted by Pfizer and Moderna and they will make their recommendations. We expect the FDA to make a decision shortly after those meetings.

The CDC's advisory committee is then going to meet on Friday, June 17, and Saturday, June 18. We expect the CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky, to then make her recommendations sometime after those meetings. If the FDA authorizes and CDC recommends that kids under five get vaccinated, vaccinations will begin quickly thereafter. So what does this mean for you if you're a parent or a pediatrician? Realistically, it means we could see shots in arms of kids under five as early as the week of June 20th.