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Paediatricians welcome COVID vaccines for kids, say parents mustn’t hesitate to go for them

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New Delhi [India], April 26 (ANI): The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) on Tuesday granted an emergency use authorisation (EUA) to Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin for the age group of 6-12 years.

Following the DCGI’s move, Paediatric Pulmonologist at Delhi’s Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Dr Dhiren Gupta welcomed the decision and urged parents not to hesitate to get their children vaccinated.

Meanwhile, Corbevax has been granted emergency use authorisation for the age group 5-12 years while Zydus Cadila’s two-dose Covid-19 vaccine has been approved for children more than 12 years of age.

“It is a good move to approve vaccines for kids. Our vaccine system has been elaborated and now we have vaccines for kids also. In the past one month, since the kids are going to school, they are getting infections. The vaccine doesn’t prevent the infection but definitely helps in confidence-building for the family. Secondly, Omicron is a milder variant but in future, it will help in other variants,” Dr Dhiren told ANI.

The Paediatric Pulmonologist clarified that these approved vaccines are safe as experts have reviewed the data several times. He said, “This vaccine is not like experimentation. This vaccine has been there for four months. Scientists have stated its efficacy and that is why it has been rolled out for 5-12 years. We want a safe vaccine for this age group. There is no doubt that we should vaccinate our kids.”

Commenting on the uptick in COVID cases, Dr Dhiren termed it a “mini-surge.”

Speaking about the symptoms witnessed in children, the doctor said, “In April, we witnessed high-grade fever, cold and cough as the main symptoms. Not a single patient got admitted. Many who got infections in January-February are getting reinfected so don’t get complacent. Prevention is going to be the cure. In the paediatric age group, other symptoms are loose motions, vomiting and nasal blockage.”

Dr Sameer Bhati, Public Health Expert, Member Vaccination Awareness Committee said, “During the surge in cases, this step of government will help in herd immunity. This will support reopening of schools and will be helpful for parents. People have confidence in Covaxin because it has been administered on children of 15-18 years and real-time data is also available. Corbevax is also efficacious and administered in the age group of 12-14 yrs old. Similarly, ZycovD was earlier approved for three doses, but now the DCGI has approved a two-dose regime that will improve the production. Overall the decision taken by the government will boost vaccination in India.”

Welcoming the vaccination for kids, Dr Nita Radhakrishnan, Associate Professor and HOD, Department of Paediatric Hematology-Oncology, Post Graduate Institute of Child Health, Noida said, “The approval for COVAXIN for children of 6 to 12 year-old kids in India could not have come at a better time than this. For children, this is a boon as it ensures protection from the virus and helps them continue schooling as it should be. These vaccines have a good safety record and have been shown to have efficacy in clinical trials. It is also helpful for children with compromised immunity as it allows them to continue treatment for cancer, bone marrow transplant or solid organ transplantation, immunosuppression for many autoimmune diseases etc. without the fear of severe COVID.”

Covaxin is formulated uniquely such that the same dosage can be administered to adults and children alike. Covaxin is a ready-to-use liquid vaccine, stored at 2-8 degrees Celsius, with 12 months shelf life and a multi-dose vial policy.(ANI)

This report is auto-generated from ANI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

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