May 14, 2021

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FDA expected to authorise Pfizer vaccine for adolescents aged 12 to 15 by next week

The Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorise Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine for adolescents aged 12 to 15 by next week, reports say.

The move would see millions of middle school and high school students in the US become eligible for vaccination after a Pfizer clinical trial showed the vaccine was 100 per cent effective for the age group.

The authorisation by the FDA could come late this week or early next week, officials familiar with the plans told The New York Times.

Once the FDA gives the green light, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine advisory panel will meet to review the clinical data and make a recommendation for use in the age group.

If authorised, the age group would then begin to get the vaccination later this month, and experts say that vaccinating children is essential to bring about herd immunity in the US.

More than 105m people in the US are now fully vaccinated, which is 31.9 per cent of the population, with 246m shots administered overall.

“We can assure the public that we are working to review this request as quickly and transparently as possible,” Stephanie Caccomo, a Food and Drug Administration spokeswoman, told the newspaper.

Moderna expects to announce soon the results from its clinical trial involving those aged 12 to 17, followed later this year with results for children aged six months to 12-years-old.