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Pfizer COVID-19 shot expanded to US children as young as 12

FILE - In this Friday, April 30, 2021 file photo, a pharmacist fills a syringe with a vial of...
FILE - In this Friday, April 30, 2021 file photo, a pharmacist fills a syringe with a vial of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at the Vaccine Village in Antwerp, Belgium. The European Union cemented its support for Pfizer-BioNTech and its novel COVID-19 vaccine technology Saturday, May 8, 2021 by agreeing to a massive contract extension for a potential 1.8 billion doses through 2023. The new contract, which has the backing of the EU member states, will entail not only the production of the vaccines, but also making sure that all the essential components should be sourced from the EU.(Virginia Mayo | AP Photo/Virginia Mayo, File)
Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 5:38 PM EDT
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(AP) - The U.S. is expanding the use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to children as young as 12.

The Food and Drug Administration said Monday the shot is safe and offers strong protection for younger teens based on testing of more than 2,000 U.S. volunteers. Shots could begin soon once a federal vaccine panel issues recommendations for using the vaccine in 12- to 15-year-olds.

Vaccinating children of all ages will be critical to a return to normalcy. Most vaccines rolling out worldwide have been authorized for adults.

The latest news is welcome for U.S. families struggling to decide what activities are safe to resume when only the youngest family members remain unvaccinated.

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