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EU clears Pfizer Booster, a moderna shot for young children

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The European Medicines Agency said it has approved Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine for children ages 6 to 11 in addition to recommending Pfizer vaccine booster shots for children ages 12 and older.

Cavaleri said Moderna Shot is also recommended for use as a booster for other vaccinated people. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was previously given a green light for use in children over the age of 5 last November.

Cavaleri said data from countries including Israel and the United States of more than 400,000 children showed that a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for children 12 was safe and effective.

“No new safety signals were identified,” he added, adding that scientists were looking for side effects that were previously associated with shots, especially in cases of heart and chest inflammation. “These cases are very rare and most (people) have recovered without intervention.”

Children are usually at a much lower risk of severe coronavirus infections, but are still vulnerable to high levels of infection.

Kavaleri also said that some European countries have begun offering a second booster dose to the elderly, based on concerns that immunity may decline rapidly, but the EMA does. He said he did not make any recommendations. “At this stage, there is not enough evidence to establish the need for a second boost in the general population,” he said.

In recent weeks, COVID-19 cases and mortality have declined significantly since peaking in late January in much of Europe. However, in places where vaccination rates are low elsewhere, such as Russia and Turkey, the numbers are still increasing.

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Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

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