CDC Recommends Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 Vaccine for 12- to 15-Year-Olds

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended Wednesday that 12- to 15-year-olds receive the Covid-19 vaccine from Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE, expanding the nation’s vaccination campaign.

The CDC took the step after its vaccination advisory panel voted to recommend the shot at a meeting Wednesday after reviewing clinical trial data and other relevant information. The vote by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, or ACIP, was 14-0, with one voting member recusing. 

Vaccinations of adolescents have already begun in some parts of the country, but most shot providers were waiting for a formal recommendation from ACIP.

Expanding vaccination to children is necessary to slow the spread of Covid-19 and move the country beyond the pandemic, allowing full returns to school, work and commerce, public-health officials say. There are nearly 17 million children ages 12 to 15 in the U.S., according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, a health nonprofit.

The 15-member advisory panel consists of pediatricians, infectious-disease doctors and other medical experts. The panel’s recommendation follows the Food and Drug Administration’s authorization Monday of the two-dose Pfizer-BioNTech shot for use in children as young as 12 years old, the first Covid-19 vaccine for children in the nation.

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