COVID-19

Health Canada has received Moderna’s request for its pediatric COVID 19 vaccine

The ministry is expected to announce its decision later this week or next. (Photo: Canadian Press)

Ottawa: Following Pfizer-BioNTech, Health Canada received a request from Moderna to authorize the use of its COVID-19 vaccine in children ages six to eleven, a cohort that does not yet qualify for vaccination in Canada.

The federal ministry said in a statement that as is the case with all COVID-19 vaccines, it will prioritize the review of this application “without sacrificing high scientific standards for applied safety, efficiency and quality.”

Health Canada specifies that Moderna’s vaccine will only be licensed in children “if complete and independent scientific review of the data presented” confirms that the benefits outweigh the risks in this age group.

The Health Canada assessment will include a detailed review of Moderna’s clinical trial results, “as well as other evolving data and information on the effects of COVID-19 and variants of concern on the health of children in Canada.”

Health Canada is already reviewing Pfizer-BioNTech’s application, submitted a month ago, for approval of its vaccine for children ages five to eleven. The ministry is expected to announce its decision later this week or next.

Health Canada says it is monitoring the deployment of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for children in the United States, where it was approved for use earlier this month.

The executive director of Moderna Canada argued that interim data for its children’s vaccine show a strong safety profile, as well as a strong immune response.

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