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Do kids get the same COVID vaccine as adults?

Pediatricians and other experts answer questions about the COVID-19 vaccines.

Pediatrician Rhea Boyd, MD, MPH explains a lower dose of the Pfizer COVID vaccine has been authorized for kids 5-11.

The vaccine that kids are getting age 5-11 is one-third the dose of the vaccine that’s being given to adults. The exact dose that’s given to kids is actually a dose that’s rigorously tested to make sure that it’s safe for that age group. And that it works that it actually protects kids from getting COVID infection or complications.

So, the vaccine that’s authorized currently for kids is the Pfizer vaccine. Some people have asked, “Why Pfizer and not Johnson and Johnson or Moderna, the two other vaccines that are currently authorized and available for other age groups right now in the U S.?” And the reason is because the Pfizer clinical trials started earlier and resulted earlier. And, so, they had data that they were safe and effective before the other COVID vaccines. And that’s why kids can get that now.

This information is shared for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. The views expressed are those of the featured medical professional and reflect information available to that professional at time of filming. Always consult a health care provider for any personal health decisions. Click here for vaccine FAQs from the CDC.

Stay up to date with your COVID vaccine, including boosters!

COVID vaccines are safe and effective for everyone ages 6 months and older.

Immunity wanes over time. Keep up your protection against COVID by getting boosted when eligible.

Updated (bivalent) boosters are now available for adults and children 6 months and older.