White House To Announce When Most People Will Need COVID-19 Booster Shots

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The White House is expected to announce most Americans will need a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine eight months after being fully vaccinated. 

Sources within the Biden administration told The Washington Post that the highly transmissible Delta variant, new rise in cases, and global immunity data prompted the announcement, which is expected to come out sometime this week. 

The booster shots wouldn’t be available until mid- or late September, after an application submitted by Pfizer-BioNTech to the FDA for the additional shots is cleared, the sources said. Officials and experts reportedly went back and forth on the topic earlier this month, reviewing data about the vaccines’ effectiveness in the United States and around the globe. 

High-ranking health officials previously said it was too early to determine if and when booster shots would be needed. In July, the CDC and FDA put out a statement that said, “Americans who have been fully vaccinated do not need a booster shot at this time,” The Post reported. But the sentiment has changed in recent days, after data shows waning immunity in the US and other countries. Dr. Anthony Fauci said last week that booster shots would be “likely” for everyone eventually. 

The White House sources said the announcement may come as soon as Wednesday (August 18), but that a final decision had not been made. Whenever the announcement does come, however, information about who would get the extra shots and when will be available.

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