Israel authorizes vaccination of children aged 5 to 11

There too, the campaign will be able to begin. After the United States, Israel gave the green light, Sunday, November 14, to the vaccination of children aged 5 to 11 with doses of the Covid-19 vaccine from Pfizer-BioNtech, in the hope of curbing the pandemic .

“The Director General of the Ministry of Health has decided to follow the recommendations of the commission responsible for studying this issue and authorizing vaccination for children aged 5 to 11”, announced a statement from the Ministry of Health. The start date for vaccinations will be announced in the coming days.

The Hebrew state was one of the first countries to launch, last December, a vast vaccination campaign thanks to an agreement with the pharmaceutical giant Pfizer which gave it rapid access to millions of paid doses, in exchange for data on the effect of the vaccine on a large scale.

This campaign resulted in the double vaccination of 5.7 million of the approximately nine million Israelis, more than 80% of whom were adults. And the authorities launched in the summer a new campaign for the administration of a booster dose granted to more than four million people.

Several countries are already vaccinating children

The authorities had also started to vaccinate adolescents between 12 and 17 years old, but decided on Sunday to lower this age to 5 years in the wake of clinical trials by Pfizer, a campaign in this direction by the United States and recommendations from a panel of Israeli scientists. According to clinical trials conducted by Pfizer on thousands of children, the vaccine has been shown to be 90.7% effective against symptomatic forms of the disease.

“The majority of experts considered that the benefits of this vaccination for children would be greater than the risks, which led to the decision to authorize the vaccine for these ages”, says the statement from the Israeli health ministry.

In addition to preventing them from falling ill, the expected benefits also include a decrease in the number of class closures, and a possible reduction in the transmission of the epidemic to the general population.

Injections of the Covid-19 vaccine to children aged 5 to 11 began last Tuesday in the United States. In addition to the American giant, China, the United Arab Emirates, Cambodia and Colombia have notably started to vaccinate children under 12 years old, but with Chinese vaccines.

Read also Covid-19: should children under 12 be vaccinated? Update on what we know about the benefits and risks

The World with AFP