Pfizer and Moderna seek authorization for updated Covid-19 boosters for young children


Young children may soon be eligible to receive an updated Covid-19 booster shot.

Pfizer and BioNTech said on Monday they had completed their submission to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for emergency use authorization of their updated Covid-19 recall for children ages 5 to 11. Modern said Friday it has sought FDA clearance for its updated recall for adolescents 12 to 17 years old and for children 6 to 11 years old.

Like the boosters that became available to seniors earlier this month, these bivalent boosters target the original strain of coronavirus as well as the Omicron BA.4/BA.5 subvariants.

Pfizer’s updated booster is currently licensed for people 12 and older and Moderna’s is licensed for adults 18 and older.

Pfizer announced on Monday that it has initiated a Phase 1/2/3 study of the safety, tolerability and immunogenicity of the vaccine in people aged 6 months to 11 years.

Moderna tweeted that its request for permission for an updated recall for children ages 6 months to 5 years is expected later this year.

Currently, people too young to receive an updated booster can still be boosted with earlier versions of Covid-19 vaccines.

Data released Thursday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows around 4.4 million people have received a dose of the updated Covid-19 reminders.

The total does not reflect doses given in Idaho and Texas due to how those states report vaccinations. The agency says it is working to integrate this information.

For now, people 12 and older who have received their primary vaccine series are eligible to get the updated boosters, which replace the original boosters in those age groups. People who have recently had Covid-19 may want to wait at least three months, as the infection itself can act as a booster.

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