Pointed to insufficient data to show the usefulness of booster shots in the general population even the US Advisory Committee on Immunization (ACIP) emphasized, top US health officials urged Biden administration to freeze its plans to administer COVID vaccine booster shots to millions of Americans later this month.
President Biden said that starting September 20, all American adults should receive a third dose within eight months of their second shot, a move the US health agencies called premature since they have yet to approve universal boosters for any of the three vaccines used in the US.
The CDC and FDA’s heads has allegedly stressed to the administration officials during a White House meeting earlier this week they can only recommend boosters for the Pfizer vaccine in the coming weeks and possibly only for certain recipients, though they have publicly backed Biden’s booster plan.
White House spokesman said after the meeting that they follow the science and that they’re seeking a full review and approval for boosters by the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Despite the public support, it seems that top health agencies’ officials are expressing their concerns and reservations in private, with acting FDA head Janet Woodcock saying during a closed-door discussion that it’s risky to announce fixed booster campaign date before regulators had an opportunity to analyse the data.
Two top FDA executives involved in vaccine research have stirred further controversy abruptly resigning their posts earlier this week in protest of the numerous federal missteps with Biden’s premature booster announcement apparently being the last straw.
Meanwhile, citing data on the effectiveness of shots, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) pointed on Wednesday there’s no urgent need for vaccines boosters, noting extra doses can be considered for people who experience a limited response to the standard regimen and emphasizing these shots should be treated differently from booster doses.
Only a month ago, top administration Covid-19 adviser Anthony Fauci suggested it was far too early to discuss boosters pointing that even Pfizer CEO Bourla had apologized for publicizing the company’s work on boosters at such an early stage.
We should mention here Bourla going even further in the attempts to further increase already massive windfall from a booster drive for the pharmaceutical firms – $50 billion in coronavirus jab sales are expected this year alone- floating the idea of regular, yearly Covid-19 immunizations.