Local vaccinators prepare to vaccinate 12 to 15-year-olds ahead of CDC, DHS approval of Pfizer

MADISON, Wis.– The Food and Drug Administration authorized the use of the Pfizer vaccine in 12 to 15-year-olds, moving about 300,000 teens and pre-teens closer to the front of the line in Wisconsin.

“I think it’s exciting from the standpoint of a parent and, you know, as a physician wanting to see us continue to move back more towards normal,” UW Health’s Dr. Matt Anderson said. “This is going to be that next step to hopefully get them back to having their more usual pre-COVID existence, which is really valuable.”

Anderson said it’s important that 12 to 15-year-olds become eligible to be vaccinated to protect themselves and the community.

Only Pfizer would be available to this age group if approved by the CDC and Wisconsin DHS. With demand falling in the older age groups, Anderson said there’s more room for the pre-teens and teens to make appointments.

“We’re going to be in a really good position to be able to offer a lot of people who are highly motivated to get vaccinated,” Anderson said.

With a child in this age group himself, Anderson said he understands why parents want to be certain this vaccine is safe for their kid. He said the FDA and CDC wouldn’t approve a drug that isn’t, but if parents still have doubts, they can read through the data once it’s made public.

“I’m fully anticipating based on the reviews that have occurred and that will occur that when that recommendation comes forward, I’m going to be really excited to protect my child,” Anderson said.

Local vaccinators will wait for final approval before opening appointments for 12 to 15-year-olds. Appointments will be made online.