Monday, June 21, 2021
FDA Says COVID-19 Vaccine is A-Okay for 12-Year-Olds
Scott Milner works Monday morning in the Thor Outlaw recreational vehicle, which was parked at the Bloom Community Food Center in Bellevue.
Tuesday, May 11, 2021


Twelve-year-olds have gotten the greenlight for Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine from the FDA.

The Food and Drug Administration announced Monday afternoon that they were expanding emergency use authorization for Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to kids 12 to 15.

Authorization came following a clinical trial of nearly 2,300 youngsters that showed the vaccine’s efficacy is 100 percent and that the vaccine is well tolerated among that age group.

Idaho reported 259 new cases of coronavirus on Monday for a total of 189,128. Seven Idahoans have lost their lives to COVID since Friday for a total of 2,061. Blaine County has no had any new cases of the virus in the past four days, its total staying at 2,368.

Vaccinations for 12-to-15-year-olds, however are not expected to begin until after Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of Centers for Disease Control, decides whether her agency will recommend the vaccine’s use for that age group. That is expected to come Wednesday after the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices meets.

Scott Milner, St. Luke's senior pharmacy director, said St. Luke's Health Systems is doing what it needs to do to prepare to vaccinate 12- to 15-year-olds. That means they might be able to offer vaccines to that age group while their mobile vaccination van is in the Wood River Valley this week.

Expanding authorization to those 12 to 15 will open the vaccination to nearly 17 million Americans—5 percent of the U.S. population. When that happens, 85 percent off the U.S. population will be eligible to receive a vaccine.

Pfizer said it expects to submit for emergency use authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 2 to 11 in September.

COVID-19 vaccines from Moderna and Johnson & Johnson remain authorized for use by those 18 and older.

About 58 percent of American adults have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Idaho is near the bottom when it comes to the number of residents that have received vaccine.

According to the latest figures, only 44.4 percent of Idahoans have received at least one dose of vaccine. Rounding out the bottom is Mississippi where only 41 percent of adults have received at least one dose. That state is followed by Alabama, Louisiana, Wyoming and West Virginia.

In contrast, about 75 percent of adults in Vermont have had at least one dose of vaccine. The other top five states include Massachusetts, Hawaii, Connecticut and New Hampshire.

Part of the reason for Idaho’s low vaccine rate is its high birth rate, said Scott Milner, who was in the Wood River Valley Monday to help with vaccination efforts in St. Luke’s new mobile vaccination van.

About a quarter of Idaho’s population are under 18 as opposed to Vermont where 18.3 percent of the population is under 18. Milner said Idaho could see its percentage climb as youngsters as young as 12 begin to get vaccinated.


St. Luke’s new Vaccine Mobile Unit will be at:

  • The Meadows south of Ketchum from 4 to 8 p.m. today—Tuesday, May 11.
  • Wood River YMCA in Ketchum from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 12.
  • Bellevue at 600 N. Main St. from 9 a.m. to noon Thursday, May 13.
  • The Summit Apartments at 155 W. Galena St., in Hailey from 2 to 3 p.m. Thursday, May 13.
  • Shoshone at 103 N. Greenwood St. from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. Friday, May 14.
  • Kiwanis Park near Balmoral Apartments in Hailey from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 6 p.m. Saturday, May 15.



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