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France Approves Pfizer Vaccine for 5-11 Year-Olds Kids


Mon 20 Dec 2021 | 05:40 PM
Omnia Ahmed

France's Haute Autorite de Sante (HAS) health regulator approved the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for all children aged 5-11 on Monday.

Lise Alter, one of the doctors charged with the risk evaluation of new drugs, stated that the vaccine showed high efficacy among children.

"The HAS suggests that all parents who want it can have their children aged 5 to 11 years vaccinated," Alter added.

"With the arrival of the Omicron variant, which is more contagious than the Delta variant, we can expect an increase in severe forms in children without pre-existing health conditions," she noted.

Moreover, Alter said that, although COVID-19 rarely caused severe symptoms in children, 80% of severe forms of the disease affected children without pre-existing health conditions.

French President Emmanuel Macron has previously affirmed that he was in favour of vaccinating children but added that this needed to remain the decision of parents.

Meantime, France is canceling New Year’s concerts, calling on people to get vaccinated against the coronavirus ahead of the holiday festivities as infections surge and the government tries to avoid another lockdown.

“The fifth wave is here and it is here in full force,” Prime Minister Jean Castex told a news conference, adding that the fast-spreading omicron variant is expected to dominate infections in the country at the start of January.

In like manner, the government banned fireworks displays at New Year’s celebrations and urged people to avoid large gatherings and limit the number of family members congregating at Christmas to curb the spread of the virus during the holidays.

“The fewer you are, the lower the risk,” Castex said.