Millions of Americans vaccinated against the coronavirus with overlying medical conditions will be eligible for third doses.
This comes after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) voted Thursday to recommend that certain at-risk groups of people should receive a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for added protection against COVID-19.
This is aimed at fortifying their defenses against a highly transmissible variant that ignited a fourth deadly wave of illness.
“At CDC, we are tasked with analyzing complex, often imperfect data to make concrete recommendations that optimize health. In a pandemic, even with uncertainty, we must take actions that we anticipate will do the greatest good.” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky.
“I believe we can best serve the nation’s public health needs by providing booster doses for the elderly, those in long-term care facilities, people with underlying medical conditions, and for adults at high risk of disease from occupational and institutional exposures to COVID-19.”
US President Joe Biden’s administration previously announced plan to offer the additional doses this week.
The recommendation only applies to the Pfizer vaccine, and people who were initially vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine.
Moderna has also submitted its application to the FDA for its booster dose and could receive authorization within weeks. Johnson & Johnson has provided data to the agency on booster dose effectiveness and safety, but declined to say when it would formally apply for emergency use authorization.
Kenya has so far received a consignment of 795,600 doses of Pfizer marking the first batch of the vaccines to be donated by the US under the COVAX facility.
This is part of the 2.03 million doses donated by the US government as part of efforts to boost Covid-19 vaccination in the country.