At a press briefing on Thursday, Dr. Marco Cavaleri, the EU drug regulator‚Äôs head of vaccines technique, stated its professional committee was at present evaluating Moderna‚Äôs utility to increase the usage of its coronavirus vaccine for youngsters 12 to 17 years previous.
“We anticipate that the committee will attain a conclusion by the tip of subsequent week,” he stated.
Moderna‚Äôs vaccine was given the inexperienced gentle to be used in anybody 18 and over throughout the 27-nation European Union in January. It has additionally been licensed in international locations together with Britain, Canada and the U.S., however up to now its use has not been prolonged to youngsters. Thus far, the vaccine made by Pfizer-BioNTech is the one one authorised for youngsters beneath 18 in Europe and North America.
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The EMA stated final week there was a ” attainable hyperlink ” between the vaccines made by Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech to very uncommon circumstances of chest and coronary heart irritation, largely in youthful grownup males. They stated the consequences have been largely short-term and that the advantages of vaccination nonetheless far outweighed the dangers of COVID-19.
Final week, European Fee President Ursula von der Leyen stated the EU has now delivered sufficient vaccines to immunize 70% of its grownup inhabitants and plenty of international locations need to inoculate youngsters, regardless of the considerably decrease threat they face from COVID-19.
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Though Britain‚Äôs regulatory company has licensed the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for youngsters, its vaccine advisory group has but to advocate that teenagers be immunized. Moderna has additionally filed for its vaccine to be licensed for youthful teenagers and kids within the U.S.
Many public well being officers say wealthy international locations ought to donate their vaccines as soon as their grownup populations are coated, stating that hundreds of thousands of individuals in growing international locations at excessive threat of the illness, together with well being employees and the aged, have but to obtain a single shot.
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In June, WHO’s vaccines director Dr. Kate O’Brien stated that vaccinating youngsters in opposition to COVID-19 is “not a excessive precedence” given the extraordinarily restricted vaccine provides globally. Whereas greater than 3 billion doses of COVID-19 pictures have been administered, fewer than 2% have been in poor international locations, the place the easier-to-spread delta variant is now fueling explosive surges.