Former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb on Sunday said the Pfizer vaccine for children ages 12 and under could receive FDA approval by winter.
Gottlieb, who sits on Pfizer's board of directors, said the company's application in October could hasten for quick approval by winter.
"This fall, Pfizer is going to be in a position, the company I'm on the board of as you mentioned, be in a position to file data with the FDA at some point in September and then file the application potentially as early as October, so that'll put us on a timeframe where the vaccine could be available at some point late fall, more likely early winter, depending on how long FDA takes to review the application," Gottlieb said, according to The Hill.
But he did warn that the process could take longer if the FDA seeks more data.
"It could take longer to get to an authorization but the agency will be in a position to make an authorization, I believe, at some point late fall probably early winter, and probably they're going to base their decision on what the circumstances around the country, what the urgency is, to get to a vaccine for kids," he added.
In the meantime, the "two best things" schools can do to limit the spread is to test students frequently and isolate them in "geographic pods," Gottlieb mentions
"Those two elements alone, according to the literature, are probably the two most effective steps schools can be taking."
Finally, Gottlieb also pushed for kids to be vaccinated. As it stands, the Pfizer vaccine is the only vaccine approved for children ages 12-15 via emergency use.
"And then using masks and improving ventilation is also going to be very important," he said. "And finally getting kids vaccinated, about 50 percent of kids who are eligible to be vaccinated have been vaccinated so there's still a lot of work we can do there, getting parents more information trying to encourage parents to vaccinate their children."
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