An FDA advisory panel has rejected a plan to offer Pfizer booster shots against COVID-19 to most Americans.
It recommended booster shots only for those who are 65 or older or run a risk of developing severe desease. The decision was made by a committee of outside experts who advise the Food and Drug Administration. The rejection presents an issue for the Biden administration in its effort to shore up vaccinations as the highly contagious delta variant ravages the population across the country.
The White House plan proposed by administration a month ago was to offer booster shots of both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to nearly all Americans eight months after they get their second dose.
Panel members complained about insufficient data provided by Pfizer on efficacy, booster shots and side effects.
Research shows immunity levels among the vaccinated wane over time, yet the Pfizer vaccine is highly protective against severe illness and death, even amid the spread of the highly contagious delta variant.
CDC advisory committee that sets policy for U.S. vaccinations campaigns is set to meet on Wednesday to debate who gets boosters and how many months after the second dose. The CDC has said it is considering boosters for older people, nursing home residents and front-line health care workers, rather than all adults.
FDA and CDC will take separate decisions on booster shots for people who received the Moderna or J&J vaccine.
World Health Organization has objected to rich nations giving a third round of shots while poor countries are dealing with limited first doses.