Drug-maker, Pfizer, made a big announcement Wednesday that its COVID-19 vaccine is 100 percent protective in kids as young as 12-years-old.
- --today from Pfizer BioNTech. The drugmaker says its COVID vaccine is 100% protective in children as young as 12. KCAL9's Jasmine Viel spoke to one teenage girl who took part in the trial, and she tells us why she did it.
JASMINE VIEL: You can sit right here. We caught up with 13-year-old Emma-Kate Stibler. She was coming off the snowy slopes of Utah on her first family vacation in a year because of the pandemic.
EMMA-KATE STIBLER: It's been difficult, because for a while, I had to do online learning. And a lot of sports, I couldn't participate in.
JASMINE VIEL: But since January, the teen from Tennessee has been participating in Pfizer's vaccine trial for pediatric patients ages 12 to 15.
EMMA-KATE STIBLER: I did it to help get information and data on children when getting vaccinated.
JASMINE VIEL: On Wednesday, the big news from Pfizer, that the preliminary data from the study of over 2,200 participants, like Stibler, shows there were no cases of COVID-19 among the fully vaccinated adolescents. Researchers also reported finding high levels of the virus-fighting antibodies.
EMMA-KATE STIBLER: It's great to hear that, because now, teens can get vaccinated sooner.
JASMINE VIEL: Stibler still doesn't know if she got a dummy shot or the real vaccine, but she has a guess.
EMMA-KATE STIBLER: I think I probably did get the real one, because I had a sore arm, and a slight fever, and I was tired.
JASMINE VIEL: Her family had to make eight-hour round trips from their home in rural Tennessee to Kentucky for the trial. She still gets tested for COVID regularly and gives blood. The study will continue to track participants for two years.
KATE WILLIAMSON: We're heading in the right direction.
JASMINE VIEL: Pediatrician Dr. Kate Williamson with Providence Mission Hospital in Orange County says she couldn't be more excited.
KATE WILLIAMSON: It's really important to have studies in these different age groups, because our bodies are different at different ages, in terms of how our immune system responds to the vaccine.
JASMINE VIEL: Pfizer has already started testing the next age group, six months to 11 years of age. Stibler's 11-year-old brother is about to participate in Moderna's COVID Children Vaccine Trial next month. This Walgreens here in Pasadena is offering the Pfizer vaccine. It could be one of the places to start vaccinating children. Pfizer says in the next few weeks, it's going to ask the FDA for that emergency use authorization in hopes of starting to vaccinate this age group before the start of next school year. In Pasadena, Jasmine Viel, KCAL9 News.
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