Millions of Americans can get the COVID-19 booster and choose another company’s vaccine for the next shot, federal health officials said Thursday.
Certain people who were vaccinated against Pfizer a few months ago are already eligible for boosters, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now says that certain Moderna and Johnson & Johnson recipients are also eligible. And, as a bigger change, agencies allow the flexibility to “mix and match” that extra dose, regardless of what type of people first received it.
The Food and Drug Administration has already approved such an expansion of the national booster campaign on Wednesday, which was also approved by the CDC Advisory Board on Thursday. Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC, gave the final remarks on who would take the additional dose.
“The last 20 months have taught us a lot, but most of it is humility,” she told the panel. “We are constantly learning about this virus, expanding our evidence base and accumulating more data.”
There are still restrictions on who qualifies and when to use boosters. From 6 months after the last vaccination with Pfizer or Moderna, if you are 65 years old or older, a resident of a nursing home, or 50 years old or older and are at high risk of serious illness due to health problems, booster You will be prompted to get it. Boosters were also allowed, but not enforced, for adults of all ages who were at high risk of infection due to health problems and their work and living conditions. This includes health care workers, teachers, people in prisons and homeless shelters.
Moderna boosters are offered at half the dose of the original two shots.
For single-shot J & J vaccination recipients, the COVID-19 booster is recommended for everyone at least 2 months after vaccination. This is because the J & J vaccine has not proven to be as protective as the two-dose Moderna or Pfizer option.
The CDC panel did not explicitly recommend acquiring a brand different from the original, but left the option open. He just said that some kind of booster was recommended. In addition, some advisors said J & J recipients want to receive competitor boosters, and preliminary data from ongoing government research suggesting a significant boost in virus-fighting antibodies with that combination. Was quoted.
Dr. Helen Kape Talbot, CDC Advisor at Vanderbilt University, said, “We are in a different place than before the pandemic” when people had to take whatever shots were offered due to supply constraints. Said.
She called the ability to choose a different type of booster, for example, “valuable” if someone might be at risk of the rare side effects of a particular vaccine.
Approximately two-thirds of Americans targeted for COVID-19 shots are fully vaccinated, and the government states that taking the first unvaccinated shot remains a priority. Health officials want boosters to boost immunity to mild coronavirus infections, but even if the highly contagious delta variant burns across the country, all vaccines are still hospitalized. It provides a strong defense against death.
And CDC advisers wrestled with getting people who really didn’t need boosters, especially young, otherwise healthy adults whose only qualification was their job.
Dr. Sarah Long of Drexel University has expressed concern about exposing those people to rare but serious side effects from different doses if they are already well protected.
Dr. Beth Bell of the University of Washington said:
However, she emphasized that it makes sense to follow the recommendations in order for the vaccine to work and to be clear and flexible with respect to boosters.
Despite the concerns of some members, the panel’s vote ended unanimously.
The majority of the approximately 190 million Americans who have been fully vaccinated with COVID-19 receive the Pfizer or Moderna option, but only approximately 15 million J & J recipients.
CDC Expands Booster Rollouts to Mix Shots OK
Source link CDC Expands Booster Rollouts to Mix Shots OK