TORONTO – Health Minister Patty Hajdu said she expects Pfizer to submit to the use of the company’s COVID-19 vaccine in children aged five to 11 in the coming weeks.
Speaking Tuesday on Granthshala’s Power Play, Hajdu said government health officials are in constant contact with Pfizer regarding vaccine data.
“We hope to get a submission in the early stages of October,” she said. “As soon as we receive data from the company, regulators are well placed to review that data rapidly.”
The pharmaceutical company said last week that its vaccine, developed in partnership with BioNTech, is effective in children between the ages of five and 11.
Pfizer tested very low doses in a study involving 2,268 kindergarten and elementary school-aged children — now one-third the amount in each shot given. Dr. Bill Gruber, senior vice president for Pfizer, told the Associated Press that after their second dose, the company said the antibody levels in these children were as high as the teens and young adults who received regular-strength shots. are.
He added that the child supplements also proved safe, with similar or less temporary side effects that teens experience, such as sore throat, fever or pain.
The news may be welcome for parents of young children who have recently started the school year with the highly contagious Delta variant in the country.
With files from the Associated Press
This story has been updated to say that health officials are expecting submissions from Pfizer in October, rather than authorization.