Pfizer to meet with CDC, FDA about COVID-19 booster shot

Pfizer plans to meet with the CDC and the FDA today to talk about the potential for a booster shot.

While information has not be released yet regarding the outcome of the meetings, a local doctor provided his insight on why the federal government is hesitant to recommend it.

This week marks seven months since the first American got their COVID-19 vaccine outside of trials. Now, Pfizer is saying a booster shot may be needed.

Dr. Thomas Huth, with Reid Hospital said, “For a long time, we’ve wondered if a booster shot was needed. Pfizer and Moderna have said they’d be needed, but there are still a lot of voices in science who think it’s not needed.”

>> Pfizer to discuss COVID-19 vaccine booster with US officials

Pfizer is citing the need for a booster sot due to what they’re seeing in Israel. Vaccine effectiveness dropped from 90 percent to 64 percent. And, booster shots are already being distributed there to people who are immunocompromised.

The United Kingdom said they are not too far behind. But, in the United States, the CDC and FDA have not said a booster is recommended.

“It’s not really very helpful to have companies say one thing and federal authorities say the opposite,” Huth said.

According to Huth, today’s meeting will be all about the CDC and the FDA taking a look at Pfizer’s research on boosters.

“I don’t think they’ll have a decision made from the federal government’s perspective. I think they’ll get on the same page with what the message should be on booters,” Huth said.

The CDC and FDA will have to decide whether or not they’ll recommend and approved a booster, along with when they would recommend it and who should get it.

However, Huth said all of that will take time. “I think the risks are low. The question is do the benefits outweigh the risks. We know in some people, the more shots you get, like some people have had more side effects from the second shot than the first shot.” He continued, “We don’t know what happens when people get a third shot. That’s what the FDA and the CDC are concerned about.”

Kayla Courvell

Kayla Courvell

I was born and raised in a small town just north of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and decided as a child I was going to be a news reporter.