Canberra: Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has provisionally approved Covid-19 booster vaccines for adolescents as young as 12.
The TGA announced provisional approval for Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine as a booster for Australians aged 12-15, recommending that people in that age group get a booster six months after their second vaccine dose, reports Xinhua news agency.
This decision follows the provisional approval granted to Pfizer for the use of Covid-19 vaccine as a booster in individuals 18 years and older on October 26, 2021 and in individuals 16 and 17 years old on January 27, 2022, said TGA.
It is the first vaccine approved for the age cohort but must also receive approval from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) before it can be rolled out.
Regulatory approval of the booster dose for this age group has also been granted in Israel, the UK and US, TGA said in a statement.
“ATAGI will provide advice shortly on whether this vaccine should be included in the Covid-19 Vaccine programme as the final step in the two green light approval process.”
According to the data from the Department of Health, so far about 68.6 per cent of the eligible population had received booster vaccines.
There has been 6,526 total Covid-19 deaths and approximately 4.78 million confirmed cases in Australia as of Saturday.
The rollout of a second booster dose for elderly and vulnerable Australians began on Monday ahead of an expected winter spike in Covid-19 infections.
On Saturday, Australia reported more than 50,000 new Ccases and 24 deaths, including 10 in New South Wales (NSW), the country’s most populous state.