Doctor: Vaccinating children will have ‘zero impact’ on ending pandemic

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A coronavirus vaccine could be approved for emergency use in children ages 5-11 by the end of this year. That’s the latest message from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

But is this the solution to ending the pandemic? One Indianapolis-based doctor says no.

It’s not necessarily about the health of the kids. If a child does get the virus, it will likely be a mild case followed by a quick recovery. They have their own natural immunity in the form of protective molecules in their nasal cavity and lungs that prevent severe infection whereas adults do not.

News 8 spoke with Dr. Ram Yeleti, chief physician executive at Community Health Network, who says the pandemic is raging on because of adults who refuse to get vaccinated.

“Vaccinating children is not going to stop the pandemic,” Yeleti said. “It may prevent other people from being hospitalized, but it’s not going to end the pandemic at all. It will have zero impact. The only way to stop the pandemic is to vaccinate adults. Right now in my hospital, I have 200 hospitalized. They are all adults.”

The most important thing to look for in each household, he says, is who is at most risk for the coronavirus and to make sure those individuals are immunized. This includes grandparents and people with comorbidities such as diabetes, hypertension and obesity. 

Yeleti’s message to parents is this: There is no need for children under the age of 12 to get vaccinated. The push to get them vaccinated is overblown. Kids, he says, are more likely to drown than die from COVID-19.