Israel Plans to Give Vaccine to Under-16s, Pending FDA Approval

YERUSHALAYIM (Reuters) -
israel vaccination
Health Minister Yuli Edelstein (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Israel plans to give the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to 12- to 15-year-olds upon FDA approval, the health minister said on Wednesday, after the manufacturer deemed the shots safe and effective on the age group.

“The Pfizer announcement is terrific news,” Health Minister Yuli Edelstein said over social media on Wednesday.

“There is nothing more in order now than a speedy approval of more vaccine procurements (by Israel), so we can be poised to vaccinate immediately upon FDA approval.”

Vaccinating at a world-beating pace, Israel has already given both Pfizer doses to more than half of its 9.3 million citizens and residents, and seen an accompanying fall in sickness.

Longer-term vaccine purchases have snagged, however, on a dispute within Prime Minister Netanyahu’s cabinet. He pledged to resolve this on Tuesday, saying, “G-d willing, we will continue to be a global model of success.”