COLUMBUS (WCMH)–The Pfizer vaccine could soon become available for kids between the ages of 5 through 11.

Thursday, the company announced it is seeking emergency approval from the FDA, for their vaccine to be used in children.

Pediatricians in Central Ohio said the rise in COVID cases within children is concerning and believe this latest development from Pfizer could help bring down that curve.

“This has been long-awaited by those of us in pediatrics,” said Dr. Bonnie Pugh is a pediatrician at Central Ohio Primary Care.

Dr. Pugh explained this announcement came a pivotal moment.

According to the Ohio Department of Health, children under 18 now make up at least 13% of the total COVID-19 cases in the state. With the county now hitting the fourth wave, Dr. Pugh said those numbers could increase even further.

“So this fourth wave definitely hit our kids harder. Not necessarily more severe illness, but higher in numbers of course, because they’re unvaccinated,” said Pugh.

Currently, the Pfizer vaccine is being given to children aged 12 through 15 years of age under the FDA’s emergency use authorization, and their vaccine has already been fully approved for those 16 and older.

Pugh said it’s imperative that children younger than that, also get vaccinated, especially with them being back in school.

“It’s the number one thing that we can do to help protect our kids from disease, and helping them stay in school and getting quarantined if they’re exposed to somebody,” she said.

Lastly, an FDA advisory committee plans to meet and discuss authorization on Oct. 26.