Health Canada has approved Pfizer’s new COVID-19 vaccine targeting Omicron XBB.1.5 subvariant

Covid-19 vaccine. Image credit: Pixaby

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Toronto: Health Canada has approved Pfizer-BioNTech Comirnaty’s new COVID-19 vaccine that targets the Omicron XBB.1.5 subvariant.

After receiving Pfizer-BioNTech’s submission on June 29, 2023, and following reportedly “a thorough and independent review of the evidence” by the health department, it decided to authorize the shot’s use for individuals aged six months and older.

The vaccine has been authorized by Health Canada as a one-dose vaccine for individuals five years of age and older, regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination history.

Infants and children between six months and less than five years of age, with previous incomplete COVID-19 primary series, should receive three doses, and those with complete primary series should receive one dose.

A submission from Novavax for its COVID-19 vaccine targeting the Omicron XBB.1.5 subvariant for people 12 years of age and older is currently being reviewed by the department.

Guidance on the rollout of the newly approved COVID-19 vaccines is anticipated to be provided by the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) in the coming months.

“Canada will have ample supply of the new formulation of mRNA vaccines available in fall 2023,” Health Canada said in a news release Thursday.

“Vaccination continues to be one of the most effective ways to protect ourselves against COVID-19. Evidence indicates that vaccines approved for use in Canada are effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19.”