The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is expected to approve Pfizer for children in the coming days, making children as young as 12 cleared for the COVID-19 vaccine, which boosts the continued US vaccine rollout.
This as President Joe Biden sets a new goal to administer at least one COVID-19 vaccine for 70 percent of adults in the United States by July 4. A target he revealed on Tuesday, along with plans to vaccinate harder-to-reach communities and plans to vaccinate teenagers. The US vaccine rollout recorded a total of 56 percent of adults who have had at least one vaccination.
Pfizer for children may be available soon
Anyone 16 and older can get vaccinated for COVID-19 in the United States since mid-April, as per WEAU via MSN. More than a quarter of 16-17-year-olds (26.4 percent) have received at least one dose of the vaccine in Wisconsin.
That may change soon, as Pfizer awaits FDA approval to extend its patient base to include children as young as 12 years old. The DHS Bureau of Communicable Diseases' Dr. Ryan Westergaard says they eagerly await the FDA's decision.
Biden sets new vaccination goal for adults
The vaccination rate expected to hit 70 percent is much slower than the rate at which the country has reached its current levels. Vaccinators are expanding their reach beyond the most vulnerable groups and those most eager to be vaccinated, USA Today reported.
"There are millions of people in the United States who only need a little push to get the shot. We need your assistance. We're counting on you to get it back to us." The next step, according to Biden, could be more complicated than the first, which involved buying enough doses for every American and establishing an extensive distribution system.
According to a report published Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health research organization, most states are at or above the point where supply exceeds demand. Although less than half of adults in one out of every four states have received at least one vaccination, this is the case. But a lot lower than what is needed to keep outbreaks at ease. Alabama had the lowest rate of 41 percent as of April 29. The highest percentage was 74 percent in New Hampshire.
Eight of the 12 states with 60 percent or more adults receiving at least one dose are in the Northeast. The South is home to nine of the 13 states where less than half of adults have received a vaccine.
The administration announced on Tuesday that if states do not use all of their vaccine doses in a given week, they will be redistributed. States that want more will apply each week for any unclaimed doses.
Pfizer's new vaccine version can be stored in the refrigerator
According to Daily Mail, Pfizer has informed US health regulators about a new version of its COVID-19 vaccine that can be kept in refrigerators for up to ten weeks. In an earnings report on Tuesday, the drugmaker giant said that it sent stability data to the FDA on Friday. The company expects the formulation to be approved for emergency use soon.
The two-dose vaccine can currently be stored for up to six months at ultra-cold temperatures ranging from -80C to -60C, or for two weeks at temperatures ranging from -25C to -15C. The vials can be held in the refrigerator for up to five days once opened, between 2C and 8C.
If accepted, the new version could be stored for 70 days or ten weeks at just above freezing temperatures. It comes as Pfizer and its partner, BioNTech SE, aim to seek FDA authorization for the COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 11 and younger by September. President Joe Biden announced that children aged 12 to 15 could be vaccinated as early as next week.
Pfizer engineers designed special boxes to transport the vaccine at high temperatures once authorized and ship from Kalamazoo, Michigan before the FDA granted emergency use authorization.