Pfizer seeks to expand omicron booster to children ages 5-11

Pfizer on Monday asked US regulators to expand the use of its updated COVID-19 booster vaccine to children ages 5 to 11.

Primary school-age children have already received child-sized doses of Pfizer’s original vaccine, a third of the dose given to everyone over 12 years of age: two primary vaccines plus a booster.

If the Food and Drug Administration agrees, they would start receiving a child-sized dose of the new omicron-targeted formula when it was time for their booster.

FDA vaccine chief Dr. Peter Marks said last week that he expected a decision soon on boosters for that age group.

Pfizer and its partner BioNTech also announced a new omicron-focused booster study in even younger children, ages 6 months to 4 years, to test different doses.

Updated boosters made by Pfizer and rival Moderna were released earlier this month for everyone ages 12 and older. They are a modification of the vaccines that have already saved millions of lives: a combination or “bivalent” injection that contains half the original prescription and half the protection against the relatives omicron BA.4 and BA.5 responsible for most of the COVID-19 cases today. 19 cases.

The hope is that the modified boosters will help control ongoing COVID-19 cases and mitigate another winter surge. As of last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said 4.4 million Americans had received an updated booster so far.


The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

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