The UK’s medicines regulator has approved the Moderna Covid vaccine for children aged 12- to 17-years-old.
The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) confirmed today (17 August) that the vaccine is ‘safe and effective’ for the age group.
At the start of this month, NHS England instructed clinics to begin vaccinating all 16- to 17-year-olds and 12- to 15-year-olds deemed to be at risk.
The MHRA today said that it is now down to the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to advise on its use as part of the vaccine programme, alongside the Pfizer/BioNTech shot.
Dr June Raine, MHRA chief executive, said: ‘I am pleased to confirm that that the Covid-19 vaccine made by Moderna has now been authorised in 12– to 17-year-olds. The vaccine is safe and effective in this age group.
‘We have in place a comprehensive safety surveillance strategy for monitoring the safety of all UK-approved Covid-19 vaccines and this surveillance will include the 12- to 17-year age group.’
It comes after a Public Health England funded study found that two doses of the Pfizer or AstraZeneca Covid vaccines are necessary for good protection against the delta variant.
The research, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, reported that a two-dose regimen of the Pfizer vaccine was 88% effective against symptomatic disease caused by the delta variant. A two-dose course of the AstraZeneca jab was also found to be 67% effective against symptomatic disease.