Researchers finalizing plans for children’s COVID-19 vaccine trial in Omaha

Published: Feb. 10, 2021 at 6:05 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -Right now, there’s a push to research the effects of the COVID-19 vaccine in children.

In the coming weeks, a local clinic is hoping to start a clinical trial right here in Omaha.

The plans are being finalized right now.

Paula Shearer is the mother of two 11-year-old boys.

She says she plans to sign her sons up for the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine trial.

“The more that my kids can participate in a study the more likely they are to release the vaccines for the pediatric populations,” said Paula Shearer.

Quality Clinical Research is working on finalizing plans to start the Moderna trial in March.

They are hoping to have up to 60 children ranging from ages 6 months to 12 years-old enrolled.

One major difference between this trial and the adult trial?

The dosage will be lower.

Everything else—will look very similar to the adult studies.

“It is a one-to-one placebo study. So, a 50/50 chance of getting the real drug or the placebo. And, it is a two-part injection. So, you’ll get your first injection of either real drug or placebo. We’ll check-in every couple of weeks and then I believe the second dose is at 28 days just like the adult version,” said Amanda Kienbaum, Quality Clinical Research.

Details of the study are still being worked on but quality clinical research says they expect to monitor participants for up to a year.

Shearer says she feels more comfortable knowing the adult version is on the market.

“It’s already been out and tested on adults. Now they just need to test it on children. My kids are ridiculously healthy so I think them taking part in this study is going to be safe for them,” said Shearer.

Head of infectious disease at UNMC- Dr. Mark Rupp says children are in a special group when it comes to trials.

He says it’s critical they are looked at to see if the vaccine is safe for that group.

“The barometer is a little bit different for kids. Number one they are not capable of making these complex decisions on their own so we look to their guardians, their parents to make that decision. And because kids don’t get as seriously ill as frequently as adults the safety profile needs to be very, very strong,” said Dr. Mark Rupp, UNMC head of infectious disease.

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