Health Canada approves Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for children

Health Canada has officially approved Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine for children ages five to 11, heralding it as more than 90 per cent effective against COVID-19.

The federal department posted online this morning, about a month after it received the company’s submission.

“After a thorough and independent scientific review of the evidence, the department has determined that the benefits of this vaccine for children between five and 11 years of age outweigh the risks,” wrote Health Canada in a release.

“This is the first COVID-19 vaccine authorized in Canada for use in this age group and marks a major milestone in Canada’s fight against COVID-19.”

Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine is delivered in doses one-third the size of those given to adults and kids 12 and older. Health Canada authorized a two-dose regimen to be administered three weeks apart.

The department said clinical trials showed the vaccine was 90.7 per cent effective at preventing COVID-19 in children five to 11 years of age and that no serious side effects were identified.

More details, including a delivery plan, are expected this morning during a 10 a.m. ET briefing.

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