Local hospitals are just waiting for the green light from the CDC.

By: KDKA-TV’s Shelley Bortz

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — As early as this week, hospitals across the region are gearing up to roll out COVID-19 vaccines for kids ages 5 to 11.

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Right now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is all that stands in the way. An advisory board meets Tuesday to review the pediatric doses and is expected to clear them for distribution.

Nick Osman has two sons who fit into the latest category of Americans to be approved to get the COVID-19 vaccine: children ages 5 to 11. He told KDKA’s Shelley Bortz he’s not running to the pediatrician to get either of his children vaccinated anytime soon.

“Just nervous about being the first ones and not knowing how it goes. Just more information and make sure it’s safe for everybody,” Osman said.

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The FDA approved the Pfizer vaccine for the 5 to 11 age group on Friday. The company said its low-dose vaccine is one-third of the dosage given to adults and is more than 90 percent effective in preventing symptomatic infection.

Local hospitals are just waiting for the green light from the CDC to move forward with the public distribution. In a statement, UPMC said, in part:

“UPMC leaders are preparing for this final federal guidance to come this week and if approved, we will quickly put plans into place to vaccinate the 5-11 age group.”

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Meanwhile, some parents told KDKA they have already made appointments for their kids to be vaccinated at their doctor’s offices as early as next week.