Fauci expects COVID-19 vaccines for kids in late 2021, sees need for booster shot

FILE PHOTO: Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases testifies before a House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis on the Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., April 15, 2021. Susan Walsh/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo


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NEW YORK (Reuters) — Kids in the United States will likely be able to get COVID-19 vaccinations by the end of this year or the first quarter of 2022, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, said at an event on Wednesday.

The United States earlier this month cleared the way for the use of the COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer and partner BioNTech in adolescents aged 12 and above.

Fauci also noted the need for a COVID-19 booster shot within a year or so after getting the primary shot.

"I think we will almost certainly require a booster sometime within a year or so after getting the primary because the durability protection against coronavirus is generally not lifelong similar to measles," he said.

Pfizer Chief Executive Officer Albert Bourla at the event said there is likely a need for booster shots between 8-12 months. In April, Bourla told CNBC people will "likely" need a third booster dose of COVID-19 vaccines within 12 months.

Scientists, however, are questioning the need for COVID-19 booster shots due to a lack of data to make an informed decision.

There has been significant headway in ensuring vaccine equity, Fauci added, highlighting that the shots should be available in geographic locations easily accessible to minorities as a lesson for the next pandemic.

(Reporting by Trisha Roy in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

© Copyright Thomson Reuters 2021


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