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Fauci defends FDA panel that rejected booster Covid shots for all

Fauci defends FDA panel that rejected booster Covid shots

September 21, 2021: -Dr. Anthony Fauci defended the Food and Drug Administration panel’s decision to not accept offering a third booster dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to the general U.S. population.

“I don’t think they made a mistake,” the White House chief medical adviser told CNN.

Fauci further said that he would support a third dose if future data shows it’s effective. As the FDA gathers new information on boosters, convincing unvaccinated Americans to get vaccinated remains the priority.

Fauci’s comments come after the FDA advisory committee on Friday voting against giving third doses of Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine to all Americans. However, they recommended doses for people 65 and older and those with underlying conditions.

The FDA panel’s decision adds to the confusion about booster doses after President Joe Biden said boosters would become available to all Americans starting the week of September 20.

“I understand why might be confusing because I think people did not understand the difference of plans for something and actually what element of that, what proportion of it you’re going to roll out, and that’s what happened,” he told NBC.

He told ABC’s “This Week” that the administration set the September 20 deadline as a placeholder, contingent on input from the FDA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“The plan was that we should be ready to do this sooner a decision is made,” he said. “And when you have a plan, putting a date on it, and you say, ‘We want to be able to be ready to roll out on the week of September 20.”

Recent data from Israel suggested that while the vaccine’s effectiveness diminishes over time, the third dose of Pfizer six months after a second dose could restore protection from infection to 95%.

As of September 18, over 181 million Americans have been fully vaccinated. Over 670,000 people have died from Covid-19 nationwide.

Data on boosters from Moderna and Johnson & Johnson is expected in the future weeks, Fauci said. He told “This Week” there will “certainly” be a vaccine for children this fall.

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