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  • AAFP Urges FDA to Consider Emergency Use Authorization of COVID-19 Vaccines for Children Under 12

    Monday, August 16, 2021

    Statement attributable to:
    Ada D. Stewart, MD
    American Academy of Family Physicians

    “The American Academy of Family Physicians joins other health organizations in urging the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to consider emergency use authorization of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine for children under age 12, based on data from the initial cohort enrolled in clinical trials.

    “The surge of the Delta variant and the alarming rise in pediatric COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations underscore the need to reevaluate the risk-benefit analysis for this age group, as the risk for severe and long-lasting impacts on health outcomes in unvaccinated children is increasing. Family physicians play an instrumental role in caring for, counseling, and immunizing children and their families, and are uniquely positioned to discuss and distribute the vaccine in the communities in which they serve.

    “Vaccination is currently the leading public health strategy to end the COVID-19 pandemic. To that end, the AAFP believes it’s critical that children under 12 have access to a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible. As children across the nation return to school in-person, we encourage the FDA to carefully consider the impact of its regulatory decisions on the timing of availability of COVID-19 vaccines for children. We applaud the FDA’s ongoing commitment to advancing evidence-based immunizations and treatments for COVID-19. Every ounce of prevention—especially vaccination—helps us combat this virus."

    Editor's Note: To arrange an interview with Dr. Stewart, contact Julie Hirschhorn, 202-655-4949, or


    About American Academy of Family Physicians
    Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 129,600 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the largest medical society devoted solely to primary care. Family physicians conduct approximately one in five office visits -- that’s 192 million visits annually or 48 percent more than the next most visited medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care. To learn more about the specialty of family medicine and the AAFP's positions on issues and clinical care, visit For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, please visit the AAFP’s consumer website,