FDA authorizes new booster shots

September 1, 2022

The proof will be in the pudding.

FDA Commissioner Robert Califf. The FDA authorized an updated Covid-19 vaccine formula for the first time since the shots were made available in December 2020. The booster is intended to help prevent a Covid surge in the fall and winter months.

Why It Matters: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorized a new Covid-19 booster shot. Approval from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is still required but that could happen before the end of the week, allowing the boosters to be made available to the public after Labor Day weekend.

  • The booster targets the original Covid-19 strain as well as the BA.4 and BA.5 strains, which are the most dominant in the U.S. right now. The original vaccine, released in December 2020, will no longer be used for booster doses.
  • Officials are still testing the overall efficacy of the booster against subvariants. Doctors have mixed opinions, with some feeling hopeful. “I think it is going to be better. At least it reflects where the virus is going,” said Jeanne Marrazzo, director of the infectious diseases division at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
  • “We don’t know how well these vaccines are going to do,” said Amesh Adalja, an infectious disease doctor and senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security.
  • Vaccine numbers: Out of the nearly 70% of fully vaccinated Americans, about half of them have received one booster dose and about 34% have received a second booster dose.

FDA authorizes Covid booster shots that target omicron BA.5 variant (CNBC)

What you need to know about fall booster shots of coronavirus vaccine (Washington Post)

Cha-Cha-Changes: Updated CDC Covid guidance (SmartHER News)

by Jenna Lee,