Europe 1 with AFP 2:50 p.m., December 19, 2022
French health authorities have recommended an anti-Covid vaccine for the first time to certain babies under four years old, but without doing so for this entire age group as in the United States.
For the moment, the High Authority for Health has only authorized the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
The French health authorities have, for the first time, recommended Monday an anti-Covid vaccine, that of Pfizer / BioNTech, to certain babies under four years old, but without doing so for this entire age group as in the United States .
The High Authority for Health (HAS) "recommends extending vaccination against Covid-19 as of today to children aged 6 months to 4 years old at risk of a serious form of the disease and death", announces t she in a statement.
This is the first time that an anti-Covid vaccine has been approved in France for babies.
The opinions of the HAS are theoretically advisory, but the Ministry of Health follows them almost systematically.
The recommendation of the French health authorities is however much tighter than the advice given by their European counterparts a few weeks ago.
Pfizer/BioNTech, the only vaccine authorized for the moment
They had recommended the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for all babies aged six months to four years, judging that the benefits outweighed the risks.
They had also recommended another vaccine, that of Moderna, for all babies from six months to five years.
These opinions were in line with the decisions taken in the United States where, for several months, all babies over six months old can be vaccinated against Covid.
The French authorities, for the time being, have only authorized the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, and above all, have limited it to very specific categories of babies.
These are, essentially, those who are at risk of serious complications.
Very few French children vaccinated against Covid
This includes "children who have any of these comorbidities: congenital heart disease, chronic liver disease, chronic heart and respiratory disease - including severe asthma requiring ongoing treatment, neurological disease, primary or drugs, obesity, diabetes, hematological malignancies, sickle cell disease and trisomy 21", lists the HAS.
Added to this are cases of “recent cancer, chronic kidney disease or neurological disability”.
Finally, vaccination is also recommended for babies whose entourage is at risk of a serious form of Covid.
This opinion is part of a context where very few French children are vaccinated against Covid, while vaccination has been open to at least twelve years since the end of 2021.