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Paediatric formulation of Comirnaty vaccine arrives in Hong Kong
     A batch of about 19 000 doses of the paediatric formulation of the Comirnaty vaccine for use by children aged 5 to 11 arrived in Hong Kong today (October 28) as arranged by Fosun Pharma.

     Soon after the arrival of the paediatric formulation vaccine in Hong Kong, government staff carried out stringent checking and inspection in accordance with established procedures to ensure that the vaccine complies with the product specifications and that the transportation process follows the relevant cold-chain requirements. The Government will put the vaccine in validated ultra-low temperature freezers to ensure its proper storage in accordance with the temperature specified by the drug manufacturer.

     A Government spokesman said, "Currently, children aged 5 to 11 can receive a fractional dose (i.e. one-third of a dose) of the Comirnaty vaccine for adults at the four Children Community Vaccination Centres. Following the arrival of the paediatric formulation of the Comirnaty vaccine, starting from November 2, children in that age group would receive the paediatric formulation if they choose Comirnaty vaccine, instead of receiving fractional doses of the Comirnaty vaccine for adults as in the current arrangement. Vaccination venues, booking arrangements and dosing intervals will remain the same. The vaccination workflow will become more efficient with the paediatric formulation compared with using fractional doses of the Comirnaty vaccine for adults.

     The Advisory Panel on COVID-19 Vaccines has earlier submitted its recommendations to the Secretary for Health. It considers that, under the current epidemic situation, the benefits of authorising the use of paediatric and toddler formulation of the Comirnaty vaccine for protecting against COVID-19 outweigh the risks.

     The Secretary for Health has authorised the paediatric and toddler formulation of the Comirnaty vaccine for emergency use in Hong Kong in accordance with the Prevention and Control of Disease (Use of Vaccines) Regulation (Cap. 599K) (the Regulation). To ensure that the relevant vaccines continue to fulfil the requirements of safety, efficacy and quality, the Secretary for Health has attached conditions to the aforesaid authorisation, including requiring the applicant to continue providing the latest clinical data on the vaccines, safety update reports, and quality certification documents by the drug manufacturer for each batch of vaccines.

     The Government has launched the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme. Members of the public are encouraged to get vaccinated. Details of the programme can be found at the designated website (www.covidvaccine.gov.hk).

     ‚Äč"Both COVID-19 vaccines available in Hong Kong are safe and highly effective in protecting against severe illness and death from COVID-19 infection. In the face of the threat posed by the highly transmissible mutant virus strains, children are among our focuses of protection in the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme. We call on parents to arrange vaccination for their children as early as possible without delay, thus enabling them to have early protection. The Government will closely monitor the demand for the paediatric formulation and consider purchasing additional doses if needed. The Government will also continue its discussion with the relevant vaccine manufacturer about the schedule and information on the supply of the toddler vaccines. The discussion in relation to toddler vaccines is progressing well and announcement will be made as soon as there is further information," the spokesman reiterated.
Ends/Friday, October 28, 2022
Issued at HKT 19:25
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