Vaccine News & Notes — July 2022

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Parents PACK

COVID-19 vaccine approved for the youngest children

Two mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccines were recently approved for children as young as 6 months of age. This news was met with great appreciation by some parents, but less enthusiasm by others. At Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), and undoubtedly at healthcare institutions caring for young children throughout the country, it was a long-awaited moment of relief. Indeed, while young children did not at first appear to be affected by COVID-19, we came to learn that they were not spared the atrocities of this virus. To date in the U.S., almost 500 children 5 years of age and younger have died because of COVID-19, about 10,000 have been admitted to intensive care, about 45,000 have been hospitalized, and millions have been infected. The more cynical among us point to the fact that 500 is not many compared with the millions of deaths overall, but to the healthcare personnel and parents who helplessly watched those children succumb to this virus, one death was too many.

The CDC recommends getting these children vaccinated. And after reviewing the data, we enthusiastically support this decision. We also suggest starting the process sooner than later since it will take six to 18 weeks for them to become immune, depending on which vaccine they receive and the amount of time that passes between doses. Even based on the shortest timeline, young children will not realize protection from vaccination until almost the fall, when it is possible that we will again see increased circulation of the virus.

To find out more about the reasons to consider COVID-19 vaccine for the youngest children, check out these VEC resources:

New! DNA, fetal cells & vaccines: What you should know

The VEC is pleased to announce that we recently created a new Q&A sheet that addresses the most common questions we receive related to fetal cells and vaccines. The new sheet addresses questions like:

  • Why are cells used to make vaccines?
  • Why were fetal cells used to make vaccines?
  • Which vaccines use fetal cells?
  • Do vaccines that use fetal cells require additional abortions?
  • Can fetal cell DNA alter our DNA?
  • And more!

Check out the printable Q&A today. A Spanish-language version will also soon be available.

New infographic! Measles, mumps, rubella and the MMR vaccine

This new infographic offers information about the contagiousness of measles, mumps, and rubella as well as complications and facts about each disease. It also has information about the vaccine, including known side effects and their relative frequency.

Materials in this section are updated as new information and vaccines become available. The Vaccine Education Center staff regularly reviews materials for accuracy.

You should not consider the information in this site to be specific, professional medical advice for your personal health or for your family's personal health. You should not use it to replace any relationship with a physician or other qualified healthcare professional. For medical concerns, including decisions about vaccinations, medications and other treatments, you should always consult your physician or, in serious cases, seek immediate assistance from emergency personnel.