FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, November 2, 2021
Statement attributable to:
Sterling N. Ransone, Jr., MD, FAAFP
American Academy of Family Physicians
“The American Academy of Family Physicians applauds the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s milestone authorization of the first COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5-11. The FDA has determined that the COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective, and it is important that children and adolescents be vaccinated, when eligible, to protect their own health, as well as that of their families and communities. The rise in pediatric COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations due to the Delta variant underscores the need to vaccinate this age group, as the risk for severe and long-lasting adverse health outcomes in unvaccinated children is increasing. The benefits of vaccination greatly outweigh any potential risks for this population.
“Family physicians play an instrumental role in caring for, counseling, and immunizing children and their families. We provide routine immunizations for children, adolescents, pregnant individuals, and other adults and have trusting relationships with our patients, understand their unique health needs, and stand ready to counsel them about and administer COVID-19 vaccines.
“Ensuring children have equitable access to a safe, effective vaccine is critical to ending this pandemic. The AAFP urges federal, state, and local public health officials to ensure vaccines are swiftly distributed to primary care physicians. We applaud the FDA’s ongoing commitment to advancing evidence-based immunizations and treatments for COVID-19 and encourage families and their children to get vaccinated and continue to practice social distancing, mask wearing, and frequent handwashing. Every ounce of prevention—especially vaccination—helps us combat this virus.”
Editor's Note: To arrange an interview with Dr. Ransone, contact Julie Hirschhorn, 202-655-4949, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 www.aafp.org. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, please visit the AAFP’s consumer website, www.familydoctor.org.