Project Report The Burden of COVID-19 in Children and Its Prevention by Vaccination: A Joint Statement of the Israeli Pediatric Association and the Israeli Society for Pediatric Infectious Diseases

Michal Stein, Liat Ashkenazi-Hoffnung, David Greenberg, Ilan Dalal, Gilat Livni, Gil Chapnick, Chen Stein-Zamir, Shai Ashkenazi, Lior Hecht-Sagie, Zachi Grossman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

As of October 2021, SARS-CoV-2 infections were reported among 512,613 children and adolescents in Israel (~33% of all COVID-19 cases). The 5–11-year age group accounted for about 43% (223,850) of affected children and adolescents. In light of the availability of the Pfizer-BioNTech BNT162b2 vaccine against COVID-19 for children aged 5–11 years, we aimed to write a position paper for pediatricians, policymakers and families regarding the clinical aspects of COVID-19 and the vaccination of children against COVID-19. The first objective of this review was to describe the diverse facets of the burden of COVID-19 in children, including the direct effects of hospitalization during the acute phase of the disease, multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, long COVID and the indirect effects of social isolation and interruption in education. In addition, we aimed to provide an update regarding the efficacy and safety of childhood mRNA COVID-19 vaccination and to instill confidence in pediatricians regarding the benefits of vaccinating children against COVID19. We reviewed up-to-date Israeli and international epidemiological data and literature regarding COVID-19 morbidity and its sequelae in children, vaccine efficacy in reducing COVID-19-related morbidity and SARS-CoV-2 transmission and vaccine safety data. We conducted a risk–benefit analysis regarding the vaccination of children and adolescents. We concluded that vaccines are safe and effective and are recommended for all children aged 5 to 11 years to protect them from COVID-19 and its complications and to reduce community transmissions. Based on these data, after weighing the benefits of vaccination versus the harm, the Israeli Ministry of Health decided to recommend vaccination for children aged 5–11 years.

Original languageEnglish
Article number81
JournalVaccines
Volume10
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2022

Keywords

  • Adolescents
  • COVID-19
  • Children
  • Efficacy
  • Risk-benefit
  • Safety
  • Transmission
  • Vaccine

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Project Report The Burden of COVID-19 in Children and Its Prevention by Vaccination: A Joint Statement of the Israeli Pediatric Association and the Israeli Society for Pediatric Infectious Diseases'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this