Norwegian health official: We will not consider vaccinating children between 12 and 15 years before autumn

Espen Rostrup NakstadPhoto: Berit Roald / NTB

Although a Pfizer study shows a robust effect of corona vaccination on children between 12 and 15 years of age, Espen Nakstad excludes such vaccine use on children in Norway until after the summer.

The study found that none of the 2,260 vaccinated children were infected with the coronavirus. The Pfizer vaccine is currently approved for people aged 16 and up.

” This is a vaccine that has already been used many millions of times and which has temporary approval for use in people over 16 years,” assistant health director Espen Nakstad told newspaper Dagbladet.

“It remains to be documented that there are no problems with side effects and that it also shows a good effect in those under 16,” he said.

“Things change fast”

But the way the approval process is set up means that the issue of vaccinating children will not be relevant until after the summer, Nakstad noted.

“It looks like the race that has been put in place for approval means that this will not be relevant until after the summer. We do not know for sure, but at least it looks like most adults will be offered vaccines towards the summer. In terms of time, this offer (note: to children) might appear after the adults have been vaccinated,” Nakstad said.

“But here, things change quite quickly in terms of vaccine deliveries as well,” he added.

In Europe, Pfizer-BioNTech must apply for approval from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) before the Norwegian Medicines Agency agrees to such use of the vaccine.

Might take a few months

The process can take one to two months, according to Geir Bukholm, who heads the vaccine program at the National Institute of Public Health (FHI).

“Then, children up to the age of twelve will be a group that we will eventually consider for the vaccination program,” Bukholm told NTB on Wednesday.

The corona vaccines of Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Johnson & Johnson are approved for use in Norway. 

The use of the AstraZeneca vaccine has been paused following reports of possible serious side effects.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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