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US CDC recommends broad use of updated COVID-19 vaccines

Sep 13, 2023

Washington [US], September 13: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director on Tuesday signed off on broad use of updated COVID-19 vaccines approved by the government - covering ages 6 months and up - as the country prepares to start a vaccination campaign within days.
The final recommendation from director Mandy Cohen comes after a panel of advisers to the agency voted 13-1 to recommend the shots made by Pfizer (PFE.N) and partner BioNTech SE (22UAy.DE) as well as Moderna (MRNA.O).
They did not choose to target the shots at specific high-risk populations as some experts have suggested, and other countries have recommended. The shots are part of a push by public health officials to align the next COVID vaccines more closely with the actual circulating variant of the virus, much as annual flu shots are designed.
The recommendation differs from those in most European countries that have issued guidance. This month, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) said vaccination programs in EU countries should prioritize people aged 60 and older as well as other vulnerable groups.
In Germany, booster shots have been targeted to these groups, while the British government's vaccine committee said only adults 65 and older and some other categories will be offered the shot as they are the most likely to benefit.
U.S. CDC panel members said simply recommending the vaccine for everybody outweighed complications created by tailoring recommendations more precisely.
The CDC advisers met a day after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved updated COVID vaccines made by Pfizer (PFE.N) and its German partner BioNTech (22UAy.DE) as well as by Moderna (MRNA.O) for people ages 12 and above, and authorized them for emergency use in children ages 6 months through 11 years.
Pfizer and Moderna have said shots can roll out in coming days and the CDC said they will be available later this week.
Novavax (NVAX.O)'s protein-based shot is still under review by the FDA and a recommendation for the same is expected to be in line with the FDA's decision.
Source: Fijian Broadcasting Cooperation