Interim Recommendations on COVID-19 Vaccine for 5-11-Year-Olds Approved

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Interim Recommendations on COVID-19 Vaccine for 5 to 11-Year-Olds Approved

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Minnesota Department of Health

November 3, 2021


Last week, FDA issued authorization for Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 years old. ACIP provided recommendations for this yesterday which were approved by the CDC director. Read more in CDC’s media statement: CDC Recommends Pediatric COVID-19 Vaccine for Children 5 to 11 Years. This means children age 5 and older are now eligible to get vaccinated. 

Details on the vaccine

The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for 5- to 11-year-olds is packaged differently than the current adult/adolescent vaccine (for people down to age 12 years) because younger-aged children need to receive a smaller dose. It is not acceptable to use the Pfizer vaccine for 12 and up for children age 5 to 11 years.

Storage and handling

The 5- to 11-year-old pediatric vial has an orange label and an orange cap and has different storage and handling requirements than the vaccine for people 12 years and older that is currently in the field. The product can be kept in the ultra-low cold freezer for up to six months and in the refrigerator for up to 10 weeks. This product CANNOT be stored in the regular freezer.


The vaccine for 5- to 11-year-olds does not have an expiration printed on the vial. Instead, each vial has the lot number and date of manufacture printed on the label. The date on the label is not the expiration date

Timing of next MIIC ordering events for 5 to 11 year old vaccine

The next ordering event for pediatric COVID-19 vaccines will open this Friday, November 5, and will close at 4:30 p.m. on Monday, November 8. Orders will be processed by Wednesday, November 10. Minimum order sizes will be 100 doses. You must be enrolled in the COVID-19 vaccine program to order pediatric COVID-19 vaccine. Pharmacies enrolled in the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program (FRPP) should request doses via their CDC FRPP contacts.

Providers may begin vaccinating

At this time, providers may begin administering Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine doses (orange cap) to children 5-11 years when they are ready to do so. Carefully read and follow the EUA fact sheet for Healthcare Providers for 5-11 years of age, orange cap, (must dilute) (PDF) when administering this vaccine.

Providers are required to give an EUA fact sheet to each recipient/parent/legal representative prior to vaccination: Recipients and Caregivers 5-11 years of age (PDF).

Information for parents

Parents may have questions or concerns before their child gets vaccinated. Please help us share information about the safety of the vaccine and why it is important for children to get vaccinated. Find more information and resources at

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