This story was up to date at 8:09 p.m. Jan. 5, 2022. 

Jan. 5, 2022 – A CDC advisory panel immediately really useful that 12- to 17-year-olds within the U.S. ought to get the Pfizer COVID-19 booster shot 5 months after a major collection of vaccinations.

The CDC had already stated 16- and 17-year-olds “could” obtain a Pfizer booster however immediately’s suggestion provides the 12-15 group and strengthens the “could” to “ought to” for 16- and 17-year-olds.

The committee voted 13-1 to advocate the booster for ages 12-17. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, should nonetheless approve the advice for it to take impact.

The vote comes after the FDA on Monday authorized the Pfizer vaccine booster dose for 12- to 15-year-olds.

The FDA motion up to date the authorization for the Pfizer vaccine, and the company additionally shortened the really useful time between a second dose and the booster to five months or extra (from 6 months). A 3rd major collection dose can be now approved for sure immunocompromised youngsters between 5 and 11 years previous. Full particulars can be found in an FDA news release.

The CDC on Tuesday additionally backed the shortened timeframe and a 3rd major collection dose for some immunocompromised youngsters 5 to 11 years previous. However the CDC delayed a choice on a booster for 12- to 15-year-olds till it heard from its Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices immediately.

The choice got here as college districts nationwide are wrestling with selections of whether or not to maintain faculties open or revert to a digital format as circumstances surge, and as pediatric COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations reach new highs.

The one dissenting vote got here from Helen Keipp Talbot, MD, affiliate professor of medication at Vanderbilt College in Nashville.

She stated after the vote, “I’m simply fantastic with children getting a booster. This isn’t me in opposition to all boosters. I simply actually need the U.S. to maneuver ahead with all children.”

Talbot stated earlier within the remark interval, “If we divert our public well being from the unvaccinated to the vaccinated, we aren’t going to make a huge impact. Boosters are extremely necessary however they received’t resolve this downside of the crowded hospitals.”

She stated vaccinating the unvaccinated have to be the precedence.

“If you’re a mother or father on the market who has not but vaccinated your little one as a result of you could have questions, please, please speak to a well being care supplier,” she stated.

Among the many 13 supporters of the advice was Oliver Brooks, MD, chief medical officer of Watts HealthCare Company in Los Angeles.

Brooks stated extending the inhabitants for boosters is one other device within the toolbox.

“If it’s a hammer, we should always hit that nail laborious,” he stated.

Sara Oliver, MD, ACIP’s lead for the COVID-19 work group, introduced the case behind the advice.

She famous the hovering Omicron circumstances.

“As of Jan. 3, the 7-day common had reached an all-time excessive of practically 500,000 circumstances,” Oliver famous.

Since this summer time, she stated, adolescents have had a better charge of incidence than adults.

“Nearly all of COVID circumstances proceed to happen among the many unvaccinated,” she stated, “with unvaccinated 12- to 17-year-olds having a 7-times-higher danger of testing constructive for SARS-Cov-2 in comparison with vaccinated 12- to 17-year-olds. Unvaccinated 12- to 17-year-olds have round 11 occasions greater danger of hospitalization than vaccinated 12- to 17-year-olds.”

“Vaccine effectiveness in adolescents 12- to 15-years-old stays excessive,” Oliver stated, however proof exhibits, there could also be “some waning over time.”

Dialogue of danger centered on myocarditis.

Oliver stated myocarditis charges reported after the Pfizer vaccine in Israel throughout all populations as of Dec. 15 present that “the charges of myocarditis after a 3rd dose are decrease than what’s seen after the second dose.”