(Reuters) – Moderna Inc said late on Monday Australia’s drug regulator Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has provisionally approved its mRNA COVID-19 vaccine, Spikevax, for use in children aged six months to five years.
So far, the shot was provisionally approved in the country for individuals aged six years and older and as a booster dose for those aged 18 years and older, TGA said in a separate statement.
The move comes as Australia battles a major virus outbreak fueled by the highly transmissible new Omicron subvariants, BA.4 and BA.5, with hospital admissions surpassing record levels in several states.
Authorities in the country expect millions of new infections and are urging people to wear masks indoors, although they have ruled out any tough curbs to contain the spread.
Last week, Argentina and Canada also approved Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for kids aged six months to five years.
(Reporting by Anirudh Saligrama in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)
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