Pfizer has asked U.K. regulators to authorize its COVID-19 vaccine for teens ages 12 to 15 following the FDA’s decision to do so earlier this week. A spokesperson told Fox News that the company submitted data to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) for review.
It was not clear when the MHRA would issue a decision, or how quickly shots would be made available to teens if authorized.
“We cannot speculate on the timing of the MHRA’s decision,” a Pfizer spokesperson said.
Currently, the NHS is only offering COVID-19 vaccines to people aged 40 and older, those at high risk, people who live or work in care homes, health and social care workers, people with learning disabilities and those who are a main caregiver for someone at high-risk. Eligibility will be expanded to all adults over 20 by the end of July.
The U.K. has given out over 53.6 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, with efforts hitting an all-time high in mid-March and recently averaging around 482,000 shots a day.
In the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is meeting Wednesday to discuss recommendations regarding the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in teens ages 12-15. However, several states jumped out ahead of the committee’s recommendations to begin offering the vaccines to teens following the FDA’s decision.
Prior to authorized use in 12 to 15-year-olds, the shot had been authorized for use in people ages 16 and older. Trials involving children under 12, including infants, are ongoing. The company has also initiated the process to acquire full FDA approval.