Where are we a year later

Mark Scheurer, M.D., and Andrew Atz, M.D.
March 17, 2021
Child plays doctor with stuffed animal

Dear friend,

We celebrated the first birthday in our beautiful MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children's Hospital Feb. 22. First, how is it possible a year has already passed and second, what a year it has been! Every day, we are thankful the move happened two weeks shy of COVID-19 arriving in the Lowcountry. We are truly grateful to everyone who helped make that possible.

So where are we a year later? We are closer to the edge of the woods but not yet in the clear. So, how do we get there? Vaccines. Vaccines. Vaccines. The vaccines are effective and safe. Comprehensive scientific trials were run, on all populations, globally. If you are interested, we can share data on the vaccine trials and the results' integrity. We implore everyone to receive the vaccine as soon as it’s offered to you and your family. The practices that will positively mitigate the virus's effects and more quickly return our lives to "normal" are receiving vaccines and continued social distancing, masks and good hand hygiene.

Very recently, MUSC Children's Health was chosen as one of only 100 pediatric academic medical centers in the world to participate in the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine trials in children from six months to 12 years. It is the fastest we will launch a study but is one of our most important. This young age group otherwise would have no chance of getting the vaccine. As Dr. Atz explains, children make up 25% of the population and it is challenging to achieve herd immunity when a quarter of the population has no opportunity to get vaccinated. Our goal is to start vaccinating children late March or early April. If you are interested in learning more about this trial, please email pctg-group@musc.edu.

Inclusion in this global trial validates national recognition of MUSC Children's Health research expertise and our pediatric leadership throughout the COIVD-19 pandemic. We are on a team with the most prestigious pediatric institutions in research and health care. We are proud of this recognition and thank those who supported the many research endeavors that have propelled us to this recognition. There will be much more to share on this as we progress through the trials.

Hope all are well and safe. Please get vaccinated!

Mark Scheurer, M.D., and Andrew Atz, M.D.

MUSC Children’s Health