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F.D.A. advisers recommend authorizing Moderna’s vaccine for children 6 to 17.

A committee of experts advising the Food and Drug Administration voted unanimously on Tuesday to recommend Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine for use in children and adolescents ages 6 to 17. The vote was an important step towards authorization for emergency use.

The FDA will likely follow the panel’s advice, as it has consistently done during the pandemic, and grant the authorization in the coming days. But the move may have little immediate impact, given that Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine has been available for those age-group shots since last year. So far, Moderna injections have only been approved for use in adults in the United States.

The same committee took up a more pressing question on Wednesday: whether to recommend the Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines for the country’s youngest children, who are now ineligible for a coronavirus vaccine. The panel voted yes to both vaccines.

Because of the unmet need, both the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will prioritize decisions about young children over continuing Moderna shots for older children and teens, officials familiar with the schedule said.

Tuesday’s panel meeting focused in part on the medical and social impact of Covid-19 on about 50 million children and teenagers.

When Moderna first filed a year ago to extend the use of its vaccine to adolescents ages 12 to 17, federal officials concerned about possible links to myocarditis, a rare heart condition, delayed the decision. Those concerns have since dissipated after further research and real-world data, the company now says, and federal health officials have repeatedly raised that side effect in expert panel sessions.

Tuesday’s recommendation was to use two full doses in adolescents, just like adults, and to use two half doses in children 6 to 11 years of age.

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