(WFRV) – Over the weekend, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) authorized the COVID-19 vaccine for kids under the age of 5 years old.

Local 5 News spoke with Dr. Bill Hartman, co-principal investigator of UW’s KidCOVE Moderna pediatric vaccine clinical trial for kids under 5 to get his opinions on the latest COVID-19 move.

“I think it’s a great move for our country. Two and a half years ago when COVID-19 came to the United States, we hoped and dreamed for a day when every single person could be protected from the worst things that COVID-19 could do, and that day is today,” said Hartman in a Zoom interview.

It now stands that every single person in this country that wants to get a COVID-19 vaccination shot is now eligible to do so.

Hartman and the UW Health team were the only ones in the state of Wisconsin to have a clinical trial for the COVID-19 vaccine for kids under the age of five.

“The trials themselves run very similarly to what we did with the adult trial 18, 19 months ago. The study here was with Moderna and the children received two doses of Moderna a month apart. We’d then continuously follow up on these kids to find out if there were any side effects we needed to be aware of,” added Hartman.

The doctors also monitored if the kids contracted COVID-19, and if they did, how long did the virus last in their systems.

“We saw zero safety concerns. There are some side effects that occur like a fever or some soreness in the arm or leg where they got the injection, but overall, very very safe vaccines. Nothing popped out nationally except for these couple of side effects,” Hartman explained to Local 5 News.

Hartman also added that the vaccines themselves don’t act as a forcefield that prevents you from getting COVID-19, but they do prevent the worst things that can happen and fight off the virus as soon as you become infected with COVID-19.

“The antibodies that you have can fight off that virus very effectively and the antibody levels in these kids are exactly the same as we’ve seen in the adults who had much higher dosages,” said Hartman.

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Hartman revealed that the dosage in kids is about a third of a dose for the Pfizer vaccine and a quarter of a dose for the Moderna vaccine.

“Moderna’s vaccine is one that I am very comfortable with. I truly believe these are very safe and they are very effective. The notion that COVID-19 does not affect kids is a false notion.”