After China had the first appearance of Covid-19 which swept across the world, it brought about waves of panic, death and debility. As we brace another wave of Covid-19 followed by the identification of a new variant named ‘Omicron’, the government of India has decided to vaccinate children with Covid vaccine for kids in India who are above 15 years of age. At present, vaccination is just an armor to fight against Covid-19.
Covid Vaccine for Kids in India
A recent study in India showed that pediatric age group children are prone to asymptomatic and milder symptoms which can be the potential sources of transmission.
The spectrum of Covid manifestation varies in children starting from asymptomatic, mild respiratory ailments to multisystem inflammatory syndrome turning out to be severe and life-threatening.
As children usually form a huge demographic portion in the society, we cannot overlook the threat which is imposed by this constantly changing virus. Covid vaccines for kids in India might break the transmission chain in reducing severe symptoms, and helping them attain societal goals without apprehension and fear.
The government of India announced Covid vaccine for kids in India for children aged between 15-18 years from 3rd January 2022. Shen’s Hospital has the best experts which follow the guidelines and protocols in dealing with the Covid vaccination for paediatrics or children in Chennai.
At present, the DCGI (Drug Controller General India) has authorized two vaccines namely Zykov-D (Zydus cadila), Covexin (Bharat biotech) can be given to children above 12 years of age. But, for now as per government directives, children between 15-18 years of age can get vaccinated.
Few other Covid vaccines for children in India are still waiting in line for authorization like Covovax (serum institute), Johnson and Johnson, and US-made Moderna.
Are Vaccinations Safe for children and adolescents?
The answer would be yes. Covid vaccine for kids in India undergoes multiple phase trials to assure efficacy and safety and in children checking on the adverse effects, clinical immunogenicity, effectiveness etc.
The vaccines such as Mordena, Pfizer, Covaxin trials had minor adverse effects in children like any other vaccination. Few other reports showed severe adverse effects like heart issues, blood clots, anaphylactic reaction, and inflammatory syndromes following vaccination.
These incidents are rare but the benefit of vaccination outweighs the risk in such groups. A long-term data on covid vaccine for kids in India based on safety and efficacy are not available at present because most of the study trials in children are still on the go.
List of Covid vaccine for kids in India
- COMIRNATY(BioNTec/Pfizer): The US approved the BNT162b2 mRNA for emergency use as it showed better efficacy and safety for children aged between 5-11years and 12-17years. The low dose (10ug) is 3 weeks apart with 2 shots in 5-11years but it is unavailable in India at present.
- Covaxin : India approved it for children who are between 2-6years and 6-12years of age during the trials made during the phase II and III for emergency use and it is approved by DCGI for children aged between 12-18years.
- Moderna: mRNA 1273 vaccine has undergone trials during the phase II/III trial in 6-11yrs (the estimated completion time is by 2023), 12-17yrs age group (the estimated completion time is by 2022). The authorization is granted by the Indian drug controller but still not available in India.
- ZyKoV-D: It is the first Plasmid DNA vaccine which is authorized in India for emergency use for children aged above 12yrs. Also, it is administered through (Pharmajet) needle-free applicator 28 days apart for 3 doses.
Other vaccines are undergoing clinical trials including the Covishield, Sputnik-V /Light, Janssen/Johnson & Johnson, Covovax etc. in different age groups of children.
Since no covid vaccine for kids in India is 100% effective, the Covid-19 disease can be less severe and far less frequent compared to this disease in unvaccinated children.It is believed that Covid vaccination for the children and adolescents will bridge the demographic gap to coverage vaccine, help to block the transmission of virus and severe disease besides reducing the anxiety and apprehension surrounding social contact and outdoor activity for the child.
Read also Vaccination Chart for Babies in India.