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The CDC panel recommends the Pfizer Covid vaccine for folks aged 16 and over to clear the essential hurdle

CDC headquarters in Atlanta

Elijah Nouvelage | Bloomberg via Getty Images

A key panel from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention unanimously voted on Saturday to recommend Pfizer-BioNTech's Covid-19 vaccine for people aged 16 and over. This cleared another crucial hurdle for the drug before the vaccinations begin in the coming days.

The CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, an external group of medical experts advising the agency, voted 11-0 in favor of recommending the vaccine for use in people aged 16 and over under the Food and Drug Administration's emergency clearance. Three members withdrew due to conflicts.

On December 1, the group voted 13-1 for healthcare workers and residents of long-term care facilities to receive the first doses of vaccine once released for public use. The ACIP emergency meeting, postponed from Sunday to Saturday, followed the FDA's decision to give Pfizer's vaccine emergency approval on Friday evening.

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