Volusia County

DeLand teens getting Novavax vaccines as part of trial

DeLAND, Fla. — About 4.1 million young people ages 12 to 17 have got their first COVID-19 shot.

The only shot they can get is the Pfizer vaccine. But tucked away in DeLand, dozens of children are getting the Novavax COVID-19 vaccine.

It’s part of the company’s vaccine trial for 12- to 17-year-olds playing out at Accel Research in DeLand.

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“I just wanted it,” said 14-year-old volunteer Madison White.

The Clermont teen has wanted the shot for a while, but her mom Allisa White said, “She asked me if she would be able to get the vaccine a few weeks ago and, at that time, it wasn’t available for kids her age.”

But then they heard about the trial.

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“My friend went and did it, and I’ve wanted the vaccine, so I came and did it,” Madison White said.

The Novavax vaccine has not yet been given the OK for use on adults in the U.S., but it’s been reported that authorization could be coming this summer, so doctors can’t stress enough this teen trial is significant.

These trials are what it takes to get the vaccines on the market. The Pfizer shots that are now going into the arms of thousands of children and teens were put through the same research process.

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It will move everything one step forward and help children and teens get back to a somewhat pre-pandemic life, and Allisa White can’t be more proud.

“It’s something that she came to me and said, “I want to do this,’” she said.

Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.