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(NEXSTAR) – The CEO of Pfizer said the company is set to submit the results of COVID-19 vaccine trials in children aged 5 to 11 with the aim of becoming the first vaccine manufacturer to achieve a regulatory authorization.

“I think we will be submitting this data very soon. It’s a matter of days, not weeks, ”Albert Bourla told“ This Week ”on ABC on Sunday.

Earlier this month, Dr Peter Marks, chief vaccine officer for the FDA, said he was “very, very optimistic” that children in this age group could receive COVID-19 vaccines d ‘by the end of the year, or sooner.

Marks said he hoped the FDA would be able to analyze the results of the Pfizer study “in a matter of weeks.”

As the delta variant continues to spread among unvaccinated populations, including school-aged children, many parents, teachers and government officials anxiously await expanded access to the vaccine. Almost all deaths from COVID-19 in the United States now involve people who have not been vaccinated.

With more than 40 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine available, U.S. health officials said they were confident there would be enough for both skilled older Americans looking for booster vaccines and for young children for whom initial vaccines should be approved in the not too much. far future.

The peak in demand – expected in the wake of last week’s federal recommendation on booster injections – would be the first significant jump in months. More than 70 million Americans remain unvaccinated despite the lure of lottery prizes, free food or gifts, and calls from exhausted healthcare workers as the average number of deaths per day climbs to over 1,900 in recent weeks.

Federal and state health officials have said the current supply and steady production of more doses can easily accommodate those looking for boosters or an initial vaccination, avoiding a repeat of the frustrating and slow rollout of COVID-19 vaccines across the country. country at the start of this year.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.