Valley health authority weighs in on Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine for young children

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On Tuesday, a panel of U.S. health advisers endorsed kid-size doses of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine, moving the U.S. closer to vaccinating children ages 5 to 11, the Associated Press reported. 

In 2019 data from the Texas Geographical Center showed more than 166,000 kids between the ages of 5 and 11 live in the Rio Grande Valley, resulting in a rough estimate of how many more people will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine if the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) gives the final approval.

RELATED: FDA advisers back Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for young kids

"There's going to be rare side effects of the vaccine," Cameron County Health Authority Dr. James Castillo said. "When this is approved, it's going to be because the benefits outweigh the risks." 

Castillo says those side effects are no different from any other vaccination and include fatigue and body aches, especially at the sight of the injection.

Experts say the child-size version of the Pfizer vaccine is one-third of the adult amount, but it will offer the same level of antibodies found in people between 18 and 24-years-old. 

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