Dec 12, 2020 - Health

CDC panel recommends Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine

A nurse preparing an injection of Pfizer-BioNtech's covid-19 vaccine in Belfast on Dec. 6.
A nurse preparing an injection of Pfizer-BioNtech's covid-19 vaccine in Belfast on Dec. 6. Photo: Liam McBurney/PA Images via Getty Images)

A CDC panel voted 11 to 0 to recommend Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate for people 16 years and older on Saturday.

Why it matters: The recommendation moves the U.S. one step closer to immunizing Americans after the virus has killed more than 296,000 people in the country.

Of note: CDC Director Robert Redfield still needs to approve the recommendation from the the outside group of medical experts before vaccines can be administered.

  • He is expected to accept it within hours, CNN reports.
  • Three panel members recused themselves from the vote because of conflicts of interest.

The big picture: The recommendation follows the Food and Drug Administration's Friday approval of Pfizer-BioNTech's emergency use authorization application.

  • The U.K. became the first country to grant emergency approval for the Pfizer vaccine on Dec. 2, followed by Bahrain and Canada.
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