As Omicron Surges, Parents of the Youngest Kids Wait for Vaccines

“I have actually been fielding a lot of calls from really desperate families who are at their wits’ end,” says Yvonne Maldonado, a pediatrician and professor of epidemiology and population health at the Stanford University School of Medicine, and principal investigator of the Pfizer vaccine trial there. “I don’t have great answers. It’s frustrating and it is frightening.”

It’s some comfort, she points out, that so far Omicron appears to produce mild symptoms in many kids—though whether the variant is truly mild in all individuals or only blunted in population-level studies by more widespread immunity remains to be untangled. “The likelihood that a child will be hospitalized is well under

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