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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s independent vaccine committee meets Friday to consider whether or not to endorse Moderna and Pfizer’s booster shots for all U.S. adults.
The meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices comes hours after the Food and Drug Administration authorized the boosters on an emergency basis earlier Friday.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky has the final say on whether the shots should be administered. Walensky said on Wednesday that the agency would act as quickly as possible.
“As soon as the FDA reviews those data and provides an authorization, we at CDC will act swiftly,” Walensky told reporters during a White House Covid update. “We will be reviewing the epidemiologic data, the effectiveness data as well as the safety data. And we will provide our recommendations as soon as we can.”
The CDC cleared boosters of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine in October for all adults who received the single-dose shot.
An endorsement by the CDC would open the doors for tens of millions of Americans to receive a third shot as growing data shows that vaccine effectiveness against infection declines over time. Public health experts are concerned that the U.S. could face another wave of infection as Americans gather indoors for the holidays and to escape the winter cold.
Booster doses could help reduce transmission, which is already high, by helping to prevent breakthrough Covid infections among people who are already vaccinated.
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