Hundreds of children between the ages of 12 and 16 who have been given the Pfizer/BioNtech vaccination in Israel experienced no serious side-effects, a senior official has told the Guardian, one of the first signs that Covid-19 inoculations could be safe for minors before clinical trial results.
Israel’s health ministry has recommended vaccinating some teenagers if they suffer from underlying conditions that make them vulnerable to coronavirus.
“We have so far immunised somewhere around 600 children,” Boaz Lev, the head of the vaccine taskforce, said on Wednesday. “We didn’t see any major side-effects; even minor are quite rare. This is encouraging.”
The children, some of whom have cystic fibrosis, which affects the lungs, were not part of a clinical trial.
Pfizer is conducting a study of 12- to 15-year-olds and expects to begin another for five- to 11-year-olds. The University of Oxford has also announced a trial to test its AstraZeneca-produced Covid-19 vaccine on children young as six. Those studies are expected to take several months.
Main Photo: A child plays soccer near the light rail station during a full lockdown in Jerusalem , Israel. EPA-EFE/ABIR SULTAN
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