September 23, 2021
Data are not available to inform the interchangeability of a booster dose of one vaccine with the primary series of another vaccine.FDA deputy director Dr. Doran Fink on FDA’s authorization of a booster shot of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for some individuals.
- The booster shot for recipients of Pfizer’s initial series has received emergency use authorization for those 65 and older, as well as for those at risk of severe disease based on health history or occupation (for example – healthcare workers and teachers).
- The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster is recommended 6 months after the second dose.
- A CDC advisory panel opened a two-day meeting on this topic and has yet to make a recommendation on the booster shot. Here’s a notable excerpt from the Associated Press on the meeting so far: “… some experts were so perplexed by the questions surrounding the rationale for boosters that they suggested putting off a decision for a month in hopes of more evidence.” The CDC’s recommendation will add to the FDA’s authorization on how the booster shots should be administered.
- Why It Matters: While the FDA says the booster will provide some additional protection for certain *Pfizer* COVID-19 vaccine recipients, it did not yet authorize booster shots for those who received Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccines, and did not suggest that someone who received any other brand’s primary vaccine could receive a Pfizer booster. Research on mixing these vaccines is TBD.
by Jenna Lee,