In no hurry, the government seeks more opinion on Covaxin for kids however, health minister Mansukh Mandaviya said: “We have to move ahead carefully keeping all safety aspects in mind. The DCGI will seek more expert opinion and consider all aspects before giving a go-ahead.”
The government is wary of the fact that no country is administering a Covid-19 vaccine to children as young as 2 years.
A senior health ministry official said: “So far, no country has approved Covid-19 use for children between 2 and 6 years. At present, no country has included children younger than 12 years in its public immunization drive.
All aspects – especially adverse events following immunization (AEFI) – will be considered before giving any nod in The subject expert committee (SEC) under Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had considered the company’s data from clinical trials on three age groups:
1. 2-6 years
2. 6-12 years
3. 12-18 years, in its meeting on Tuesday.
It is recommended that DCGI give emergency use authorization for pediatric use of Covaxin in India.US and UK have introduced Covid-19 vaccines for adolescents between 16 and 18 years.
Several countries have given emergency use authorization for administering vaccines to children above 12 years and the US has also initiated this exercise.
However, it has not initiated vaccination of children in the age group of 2-12 years. This is a very tough call – to say this vaccine is safe for children.
The data clearly shows the same safety and results in children as in adults but to tell a parent to get the child vaccinated at a time when the incidence is very low is very difficult,” said the official quoted above.
Reference: The Economic Times
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