Doctor: All kids hospitalized with COVID at Kentucky Children’s Hospital not vaccinated

Additionally, most of the children hospitalized with COVID are obese.
Published: Oct. 11, 2021 at 5:35 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 11, 2021 at 6:13 PM EDT

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Some parents of children 11 and younger may have many questions about the COVID vaccine and when a child can get. Last week, Pfizer submitted a request to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for emergency use authorization of their COVID vaccine in children ages five to 11.

Norton Children’s Hospital reported there are currently eight children hospitalized with COVID; the same number of kids also have the virus as Kentucky Children’s Hospital in Lexington.

A spokesperson from Kentucky Children’s Hospital said the majority of their pediatric patients are over 12. All of the children were eligible for the vaccine, but none have received it. Additionally, most of the children hospitalized in Lexington with COVID are obese.

The FDA advisory panel is expected to meet Oct. 26 to discuss Pfizer’s data regarding the request for emergency use authorization in kids ages five to 11.

Dr. Sean McTigue is the medical director of pediatric infection prevention and control at Kentucky Children’s Hospital. He said if approved, the Pfizer vaccine could be administered by early November to children in that age group.

“The reason it has taken longer to get this approved for children less than 12 years of age is not because of concerns for safety but over an abundance of caution,” McTigue said. “Because they wanted to do was find the appropriate dose for smaller children so that they were not needing give them the same higher dose given to teenagers and adults.”

Kentucky Children’s Hospital also recently opened a pediatric monoclonal antibody clinic inside UK HealthCare’s Kentucky Clinic. McTigue said children ages 12 and up can be treated with monoclonal antibody infusion. Monoclonal antibodies are similar to antibodies in the immune system that would be produced in response to infection, but these are mass produced and designed to specifically target the coronavirus. This treatment already has approval for use with adults, and it recently got FDA emergency use authorization for children 12 and up.

To get the infusion, patients are accepted by referral only.

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