Press Releases

Contact: Michele Kayal
Phone: 703-919-8778

Statement: CDC vaccine approval opens doors to our school-age children


In response to tonight’s approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use in children ages 5 to 11 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, First Focus on Children President Bruce Lesley issued the following statement: 

“Nearly two years into the pandemic, we are now able to protect our school-age children. We are pleased to hear that child-sized doses are already on their way to pharmacies and pediatricians around the country and are optimistic that this advance planning by the Biden Administration will get shots to our 5- to 11-year-olds very soon. We have long said that children face unique obstacles to getting vaccinated. We urge the Administration to continue working to ensure that vaccine distribution is both efficient and equitable and is offered in a variety of accessible settings, including pediatricians’ office, pharmacies, schools, federally qualified health centers and others.” 

First Focus on Children began calling for a comprehensive, clearly articulated plan to vaccinate the nation’s children in April 2021. Among our most recent recommendations, from August 2021:

  • Create a public education and communications campaign to enable families to make informed decisions and to fight back against misinformation that they may be seeing
  • Use all available federal resources and existing programs for sharing information and reaching families
  • Hold listening sessions for caregivers to learn about their concerns and effective ways to address them
  • Establish an explicit goal of eliminating racial and other disparities in children’s vaccinations.