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A health ministry panel on Monday backed Moderna Inc.’s COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in around 4 million children age 12 to 17, paving the way for final approval by the ministry in the coming days.

The panel recommended lowering the current age restriction of 18 and older without conducting an additional clinical trial in the country. Pfizer Inc.’s vaccine has already been authorized for emergency use in children 12 and older since June 1.

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