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Pfizer vaccine was simply 12% efficient for youths in omicron surge: examine

Nora Gossett, 7, reacts as she receives the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine from Sophia Jan, MD, whereas her father Jeff Gossett, MD, holds her hand at Cohen Youngsters’s Medical Heart as vaccines have been authorised for youngsters aged 5-11, amid the coronavirus illness pandemic, in New Hyde Park, New York, November 4, 2021.

Andrew Kelly | Reuters

Pfizer and BioNTech’s two-dose Covid vaccine supplied little or no safety for youngsters aged 5 to 11 in the course of the wave of omicron an infection in New York, in line with a examine printed Monday.

The New York State Division of Well being discovered that the effectiveness of Pfizer’s vaccine in opposition to Covid an infection plummeted from 68% to 12% for youths in that age group in the course of the omicron surge from Dec. 13 by means of Jan 24. Safety in opposition to hospitalization dropped from 100% to 48% throughout the identical interval.

The examine has not but undergone peer assessment, the educational gold normal. As a result of public well being urgency of the pandemic, scientists have been publishing the outcomes of their research earlier than such assessment.

The staff of public well being officers who performed the examine mentioned the dramatic drop in vaccine effectiveness amongst youngsters 5 to 11 years outdated was seemingly as a result of decrease dosage they obtained. Children on this age group are given two 10-microgram pictures, whereas youngsters aged 12 to 17 obtain 30-microgram pictures.

The researchers additionally in contrast 11 and 12 yr olds in the course of the weekend ended Jan. 30. They discovered the vaccine effectiveness plunged to 11% for the low-dose group however supplied 67% safety to the group that obtained the upper dose.

“Given speedy lack of safety in opposition to infections, these outcomes spotlight the continued significance of layered protections, together with masks sporting, for youngsters to stop an infection and transmission,” the general public well being officers wrote within the examine.

For youngsters aged 12 to 17 years outdated, vaccine effectiveness in opposition to an infection dropped from 66% to 51% from December by means of the top of January. Safety in opposition to hospitalization dropped from 85% to 73% for youngsters throughout the identical interval.

The information comes as New York Metropolis plans to finish its college masks mandate by March 7, with California doing the identical 4 days later. State governments are easing mandates and restrictions as Covid infections declined dramatically after the omicron variant swept the nation in December and January

Covid infections are down 91% from a pandemic excessive in January. The US reported a every day common of practically 66,000 new infections on Sunday, in comparison with the greater than 802,000 on Jan. 15, in line with a CNBC evaluation of information from Johns Hopkins College.

The US suffered a spike in hospitalizations of youngsters with Covid in the course of the omicron wave. The Meals and Drug Administration sought to quick monitor Pfizer’s vaccine for youths aged six months by means of 4 years outdated this month in response to the variety of youngsters hospitalized with Covid.

Nevertheless, the FDA and Pfizer determined to place these plans on maintain after knowledge on the primary two doses didn’t meet expectations. The FDA is now ready to see scientific trial knowledge on a 3rd dose for the youngest children, which is predicted in April.

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