WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Food and Drug Administration says it has approved Pfizer Inc.'s best-selling Prevnar 13 vaccine for use in preventing pneumococcal disease in adults age 50 and older.
The agency's move on Friday was widely anticipated, coming a little over a month after a panel of federal health experts voted overwhelmingly to recommend the use of Prevnar 13 as a safe and effective vaccine for preventing the bacterial infection in adults.
Pneumococcal disease causes meningitis, pneumonia and ear infection.
Prevnar 13 protects against 13 strains of the disease. It's already a standard vaccination for infants and young children.
The FDA says 300,000 adults 50 or older are hospitalized annually for the disease.
Pfizer is based in New York. Its shares slipped 7 cents to $21.64 in late trading.