China approves vaccine for children ages 3 to 17
China has approved another vaccine for children ages 3 to 17 as the country works to vaccinate a large portion of its population of 1.4 billon people by the end of this year.
State media outlet Xinhua said Friday that the Sinopharm vaccine had received emergency approval for use in children ages 3 to 17. This comes after another vaccine, Sinovac, was approved for the same age group last week.
Shao Yiming, with the Beijing-based Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said during a press conference that both vaccines were reviewed in clinical trials and determined to be safe for younger age groups.
There is not a set timeline for when China will begin vaccinating its children against the virus.
Medical experts will be brought together in China to discuss a policy and plan for safely vaccinating the younger age group, Cui Gang, a China National Health Commission official in the disease control department, said, according to Xinhua.
Shao said China has already administered 800 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine in its country.
China has 254 million children and would need to vaccinate some of that age group in order to hit their goal of 80 percent of their population vaccinated, The Associated Press reported.
The U.S. has only approved the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine for those as young as 12 years old, but Pfizer and Moderna are both working on clinical trials for younger age groups.