The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized booster shots by Moderan and Johnson & Johnson, as well as allowing people to get a different brand from the one they already received.
The ‘mix and match’ strategy will be applicable for all three vaccines – Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and previously-approved Pfizer.
Those eligible to receive their Pfizer and Moderna boosters must be at least 65 years old or at high-risk of the virus. To receive a Johnson & Johnson booster, an individual must be at least 18 years old.
Tens of millions of Americans who received Moderna’s two-dose vaccine and roughly 15million who had Johnson & Johnson’s shot will benefit, as the nation significantly expands its vaccination campaign.
The move will also make it easier for Americans to get another dose, especially for people who may want another brand for their booster.
‘Today’s actions demonstrate our commitment to public health in proactively fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic,’ acting FDA Commissioner Dr Janet Woodcock stated.
‘As the pandemic continues to impact the country, science has shown that vaccination continues to be the safest and most effective way to prevent COVID-19, including the most serious consequences of the disease, such as hospitalization and death.’
The FDA clearance, which was expected, came after the agency’s Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee last week unanimously recommended additional shots of both vaccines, CNBC reported.
The FDA specifically authorized the third Moderna shot for seniors and others at high risk from COVID-19 because of their health problems, jobs or living conditions. The booster must be taken six months after their last shot, and it will only be half the dose that is given in the first two shots, PBS reported.
For Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot vaccine, the FDA said all recipients should get a second dose at least two months following their initial vaccination.
This is a breaking news story, check back for updates…
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