White House COVID-19 adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci on Sunday said the Pfizer-BioNTech shot will likely be the only approved COVID-19 booster by Sept. 20, the date set by federal health officials to deploy booster shots for people who received the Pfizer and Moderna shots.
Late last month, the heads of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and other federal health agencies targeted Sept. 20 for the rollout of booster shots for two-dose Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Fauci appeared to demur when asked during a CBS News segment whether health officials are planning to administer the boosters by that date.
“We were hoping that we would get the, both the candidates, both products, Moderna and Pfizer, rolled out by the week of the 20th. It is conceivable that we will only have one of them out, but the other would likely follow soon thereafter,” Fauci said on Sunday.
Fauci added that “the reason for that is that we, as we’ve said right from the very beginning, we’re not going to do anything unless it gets the appropriate FDA regulatory approval and then the recommendation from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.”
And, he added, it “looks like Pfizer has their data in and likely would meet the deadline” of Sept. 20. “So the bottom line is very likely at least part of the plan will be implemented but ultimately the entire plan will be,” said Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Federal health officials last week issued a joint statement saying that individuals who received two doses of either the Moderna or Pfizer mRNA vaccine should get booster shots eight months later. Their statement did not include details about when those who received the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which uses an adenovirus, should receive a booster shot, if any.