COVID booster shot approval for kids ages 12-15 could come soon

COVID-19 booster shots for 12- to 15-year-olds could be approved in the coming days or weeks, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention head said Wednesday.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said the Food and Drug Administration is looking into whether it’s safe and necessary to give a third dose to the age group.

“Of course, the CDC will swiftly follow as soon as we hear from them, and I’m hoping to have that in the days to weeks ahead,” Walensky said on CNN’s “New Day.”

It was not clear whether Pfizer, the only manufacturer with a vaccine approved for the age group, has formally applied for FDA approval for a booster in kids ages 12-15.

Some children in that demographic are now six months out from their second doses, the recommended time for those ages 16 and older to receive their booster vaccines.

Pfizer said earlier this month said it was looking at a three-dose regimen of its COVID-19 vaccine for kids ages 2 to 16.

“The CDC will swiftly follow as soon as we hear from [the FDA],” Dr. Rochelle Walensky said of approving boosters for kids ages 12-15.
Brynn Anderson/AP
Child being vaccinated.
Pfizer was looking at a three-dose regimen of its vaccine for kids ages 2 to 16.
Hannah Beier/REUTERS

Currently, no vaccine is approved for kids under the age of 5 — something Walensky said she didn’t anticipate to change in the near future.

“I know that the companies and manufacturers are working towards data for children under 5. That will not be in the month ahead, but we’re working hard to get there soon,” she said.