FDA authorized a booster dose of Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine for children aged 5 to 11 years

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has authorized a booster dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 years old. This must be administred at least five months after completion of a primary series. It was motivated this is needed because „the omicron wave has seen more kids getting sick with the disease and being hospitalized, and children may also experience longer term effects, even following initially mild disease.” Asking the authorization, Pfizer submitted data that indicated their shot was safe and generated a strong immune response in children ages 5 to 11.

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“Since authorizing the vaccine for children down to 5 years of age in October 2021, emerging data suggest that vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19 wanes after the second dose of the vaccine in all authorized populations,” said Dr. Peter Marks, director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research. To date, just 43.6% of eligible children, ages 5 to 17 years old, have been fully vaccinated in the U.S. and 25.7 million children over the age of 5 — about half those eligible — remain completely unvaccinated, including 18.2 million children ages 5 to 11. Previously, in January, the FDA authorized the use of a booster dose in adolescents ages 12 through 15.