US could administer COVID vaccine boosters 8 months after second shot
- Vaccine boosters are expected to roll out soon, as per experts
- Those are expected to be reccomended eight months after the second dose.
- Elderly will receive the boosters first
COVID-19 vaccine boosters are expected to be recommended for all Americans, irrespective of age, eight months after they get their second shot, according to the US experts. This is to ensure long-lasting protection against the coronavirus as the deadly delta variant ravages the country.
Federal health officials have been trying to determine if the extra shots for the vaccinated would be needed as early as fall, as they review the number of cases in the US as well as the current situation in Israel, where preliminary studies suggest the vaccine’s protection against serious illness dropped among those vaccinated in January.
The Food and Drug Administration is expected to approve the doses for Pfizer shot in the weeks ahead. They will further be administered widely after that.
U.S. health officials recommended boosters for those with weakened immune systems last week, saying their higher risk of catching the virus and vaccines' waning effectiveness is the reason behind it.
Health care workers, nursing home residents and other ederly, who received the first shot soon after the authorization last December, could be the first to get the boosters.
Since then, more than 198 million Americans have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with more than 168 million fully vaccinated.
The director of the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Francis Collins, talked about the rising cases of Delta variant and vaccines’ waning efficacy on Sunday, “Delta is a nasty one for us to try to deal with. The combination of those two means we may need boosters, maybe beginning first with health care providers, as well as people in nursing homes, and then gradually moving forward.”
But here we are with the delta variant, which is so contagious, and this heartbreaking situation where 90 million people are still unvaccinated who are sitting ducks for this virus, and that’s the mess we’re in. We’re in a world of hurt.”
He said because the delta variant only started hitting the U.S. hard in July, the “next couple of weeks” of case data will help the U.S. make a decision.