The leading US infectious disease expert said on Sunday “it is entirely conceivable, perhaps likely” that Americans will need a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in the coming months, but it is too early for the government to recommend another injection.
Dr Anthony Fauci, who is the chief medical adviser to President Joe Biden, said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration did the right thing last week by pushing back the manufacturer’s claim Pfizer medication for a recall within 12 months. Hours after Pfizer said Thursday it would seek authorization for a third dose, the two agencies said they did not consider the booster shots necessary “at this time.”
Fauci said clinical studies and laboratory data have not yet fully confirmed the need for a booster of the current two-shot Pfizer and Moderna vaccines or the Johnson & Johnson one-shot regimen.
“Right now, given the data and information we have, we don’t need to give people a third chance,” he said. “That doesn’t mean we stop there. … Studies are currently underway as we talk about the feasibility of whether and when we should stimulate people. “
He said it was entirely possible in the coming months “as the data evolves” for the government to request a recall based on factors such as age and underlying medical conditions. “It’s definitely totally conceivable, maybe at some point we’ll need a boost,” Fauci said.
Currently, only about 48% of the US population is fully vaccinated. Some parts of the country have much lower vaccination rates, and in these places the delta variant is booming. Last week, CDC director Dr Rochelle Walensky said this leads to “two truths” – highly immune swathes of America are returning to normal as hospitalizations increase in other places.
On Sunday, Fauci said it was inexplicable that some Americans were so resistant to getting a vaccine as scientific data shows how effective it is in preventing COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations, and he was appalled by efforts to block more accessible vaccination, such as Biden’s suggestion to go door-to-door.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson, R-Ark., Agreed on Sunday that there is resistance to vaccines in southern and rural states like his because “you have this more conservative approach, skepticism of government.” .
Describing his efforts to step up vaccinations in his state, which is experiencing an increase in infections, Hutchinson said that “no one wants an agent to knock on a door,” but “we want those who don’t have access otherwise make sure they know it. “
The local component of the federal immunization campaign has been in place since April, when vaccine supply began to exceed demand. It was described and funded by Congress in the $ 1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill passed in March and is carried out largely by local officials and private sector workers and volunteers.
Representative Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., Called opposition to the vaccination efforts of some GOP lawmakers “absolute madness.” on your vaccine feared for their own selfish gain.
Fauci has appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union,” ABC’s “This Week,” and CBS’s “Face the Nation”; Hutchinson spoke on ABC and Kinzinger was on CNN.