Malaysia just approved the Sinovac CoronaVac vaccine for 5-11 year-old kids!
Here is what you need to know!
Malaysia Approves Sinovac COVID-19 Vaccine For 5-11 Yo Kids!
On 3 March 2022, the Malaysia Health Ministry (KKM) announced that the 370th Drug Control Authority meeting has agreed to give conditional approval to the Sinovac CoronaVac COVID-19 vaccine for use in 5-11 year-old children.
The conditional approval is for CoronaVac Suspension for Injection COVID-19 Vaccine (Vero Cell) manufactured by both Sinovac Life Sciences Co. Ltd. in China, as well as Pharmaniaga Lifescience Sdn. Bhd. in Malaysia.
This makes the Sinovac CoronaVac the second COVID-19 vaccine to be approved in Malaysia for children 5 to 11 years in age, after the Pfizer COMIRNATY vaccine on 6 January 2022.
Should You Get Sinovac Vaccine For 5-11 Yo Kids?
This conditional approval will be a relief for many parents who have been holding out for an alternative to the Pfizer COMIRNATY vaccine, and spur vaccination rates.
Back in October 2021, the KKM ran a Phase 3 clinical trial to determine the efficacy of the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine for children 3-11 years in age.
However, the Malaysia Ministry of Health did not reveal what was the efficacy of the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine for the 5-11 year old age group, or how it performed against the Omicron variant.
We do know that the adult dose was only 50.4% efficacious in preventing symptomatic COVID-19 from the original SARS-CoV-2 virus, and that it has zero efficacy against the Omicron variant (see link and table below).
|Seropositive Rate||MN Titer (GMT)|
It seems unlikely that the same vaccine would impart better efficacy in children, more so against the Delta or Omicron variants.
Until there are good peer-reviewed Phase 3 results of the Sinovac CoronaVac vaccine for 5-11 year-old children, I believe it is far more prudent to vaccinate our children with the Pfizer COMIRNATY paediatric vaccine.
At least the Pfizer paediatric COVID-19 vaccine has been proven in a Phase 3 trial to be 90.7% efficacious in preventing symptomatic COVID-19 infections.
I believe KKM will continue to use the superior Pfizer vaccine in the PICKids vaccination program, while allowing hesitant parents to get the Sinovac vaccine for their children through private clinics and hospitals.
This may be the best way forward for everyone.
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