FILE – Grade one students wear masks as they attend class at Honore Mercier elementary school Tuesday, March 9, 2021 in Montreal.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

FILE – Grade one students wear masks as they attend class at Honore Mercier elementary school Tuesday, March 9, 2021 in Montreal.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Why is there no COVID vaccine for kids yet? A B.C. researcher breaks it down

Clinical trials are ongoing both for youth and for pregnant women

Although there are now several COVID-19 vaccines authorized in Canada, and vaccination efforts are ramping up, there’s still one group that’s not eligible: children.

All COVID-19 vaccines in Canada are authorized for 16 and up or 18 and up, largely, according to the University of B.C.’s Anna Blakney, an assistant professor at the school’s Michael Smith Laboratories and School of Biomedical Engineering.

“When you’re first developing a vaccine, you don’t want to do it in more vulnerable populations,” Blakney said in a recent UBC Q&A. COVID-19 vaccine trials have included some vulnerable groups, however, such as seniors because the risk to older people from COVID-19 is so great.

Trials are currently ongoing for some vaccine for youth, including Moderna and Pfizer.

Another group that wasn’t included in the initial vaccine trials is pregnant women. Moderna and Pfizer are currently working on clinical trial of their vaccines for pregnant women but the results aren’t yet known.

“This is an important group because you don’t want to get COVID while you’re pregnant but you also don’t want a vaccine that has any negative side effects on your pregnancy,” Blakney said. “As the guidelines are always changing, it’s best to talk to your GP and decide whether you’re in a risk group where you should get the vaccine. The guidelines say it’s fine to get the vaccine while you’re breastfeeding and after you’ve had your baby.”

For women trying to get pregnant, Blakney said there’s “no reason” to think that any of the currently approved COVID-19 vaccines would affect fertility.

READ MORE: Most B.C. adults could get their first COVID vaccine shot by July: health officials

READ MORE: Recent increase in COVID cases worries Canada’s health officials even as vaccines roll out


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Coronavirusvaccines

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kendra Blakely, of Lake Country, was born an amputee but thanks to the War Amps Child Amputee program she has been able to take part in activities as a child and now into her 20s. (War Amps photos)
War Amps swings in support for Lake Country CHAMP

Key tag program celebrates 75 years of helping amputees like Kendra

A student works in a science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary on Friday, March 12, 2021. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
COVID-19 exposures at 2 Central Okanagan schools

Ellison Elementary and Ècole Kelowna Secondary School are reporting exposures

Nolan Foote becomes the 62nd Rocket to suit up in an NHL regular-season game on Sunday afternoon (Photo: Kelowna Rockets)
Former Kelowna Rockets captain plays first NHL game

Nolan Foote played his first game with the New Jersey Devils on Sunday

Pastor Cliff Siebert of the Okanagan Landing Community Church (centre) addresses some of his congregation in-person for the first time in many months Sunday, April 18, as the church held the first of what they hope will be regular outdoor services with COVID protocols adhered to and obeyed. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)
Vernon church hosts outdoor service

Okanagan Landing Community Church put strict COVID protocols in place to hold sermon in back parking lot

The City of Armstrong has been named one of Canada’s 20 best towns to live based on low cost of living and high paying jobs, according to a survey by Numbeo. (Facebook photo/Rhythm Productions)
Armstrong lands among 20 best cities to live in Canada

Survey conducted based on low cost of living and high paying jobs; five other B.C. towns on list

In this image from NASA, NASA’s experimental Mars helicopter Ingenuity lands on the surface of Mars Monday, April 19, 2021. The little 4-pound helicopter rose from the dusty red surface into the thin Martian air Monday, achieving the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (NASA via AP)
VIDEO: NASA’s Mars helicopter takes flight, 1st for another planet

The $85 million helicopter demo was considered high risk, yet high reward

Russ Ball (left) and some of the team show off the specimen after they were able to remove it Friday. Photo supplied
80-million-year-old turtle find on B.C. river exciting fossil hunters

Remains of two-foot creature of undetermined species will now make its home at the Royal BC Museum

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Joudelie King wants to get out and live life to the fullest, but there are places she can’t go because they don’t meet her accessibility needs. (submitted photo)
New online tool provides accessibility map for people with disabilities

The myCommunity BC map provides accessibility info for nearly 1,000 locations in the province

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

British Columbia’s provincial flag flies in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Wildfire fanned by winds near Merritt prompts evacuation alert

BC Wildfire Service says the suspected human-caused blaze was fanned by winds

The Rogers logo is photographed in Toronto on Monday, September 30, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tijana Martin
Rogers investigating after wireless customers complain of widespread outage

According to Down Detector, problems are being reported in most major Canadian cities

Brent Thompson and Jordan Goebel enjoy coffee and crepes for lunch at The Night Cafe’s new sidewalk patio in downtown Salmon Arm on Friday, April 16, 2021. With indoor dining on hold as part of a March 29 provincial health order, Thompson and Goebel said they’d been patio hopping over the past couple of days, taking in the city’s varied dining options. (Lachlan Labere-Salmon Arm Observer)
Patio pivot offers some reprieve amid restrictions for Salmon Arm restaurateurs

Owner points to impossibility of running a business, raising a family with such a limited income

Flow Academy is located at 1511 Sutherland Avenue in Kelowna. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
National fitness group condemns unlicensed Kelowna gym’s anti-vaccine policy

The Fitness Industry Council of Canada says Flow Academy is shining a negative light on the industry

Most Read