09 24 21 9: 04 AM
From: AMA Morning Rounds
To: Velandy Manohar, MD
Leading the News
CDC Director overrules advisory panel to broaden recommended use of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine booster shots for frontline workers
The New York Times (9/23, Mandavilli, Mueller) reports that on Friday, CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky “overruled a recommendation by an agency advisory panel that had refused to endorse booster shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID vaccine for frontline workers.” The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices had “recommended the boosters for a wide range of Americans, including tens of millions of older adults and younger people at high risk for the disease. But they excluded health care workers, teachers and others whose jobs put them at risk.”
The Washington Post (9/23, A1, Sun, McGinley) reports, “While Walensky agreed with most of what the advisers recommended, she added a recommendation that hewed closely to the FDA language. Individuals ages 18 to 64 at risk of exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a booster shot, she said in a statement, released just before midnight.” In the statement, Walensky said it was her job “to recognize where our actions can have the greatest impact.” AMA President Gerald E. Harmon, M.D., “praised the CDC panel for its ‘thoughtful deliberations and recommendations.’ With hospitalization rates 10 to 22 times as high among the unvaccinated as among the vaccinated, he said in a statement, ‘our top priority should remain reaching those individuals who remain unvaccinated against COVID-19.’”
09 23 21
CDC advisers recommend certain adults get booster dose of Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine
By Maggie Fox, CNN
Updated 4:31 PM ET, Thu September 23, 2021
Vaccine advisers to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention endorsed giving booster doses of Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine to people 65 and older long-term care facility residents, and certain people with underlying conditions.
Late on Wednesday, the US Food and Drug Administration authorized giving boosters to people 65 and older and those at higher risk of severe disease and death, as well as people such as health care workers at higher risk of breakthrough infections because of their work.
Members of CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices met Thursday to decide who they should be recommended to.
The CDC advisers voted unanimously to recommend a single Pfizer/BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine booster to people 65 years or older and long-term care facility residents at least six months after they were fully vaccinated.
The advisers also voted 13-2 Thursday to endorse giving booster doses of Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine to people ages 50 to 64 with underlying medical conditions.
But that was short of the FDA's emergency use authorization, which OK'd giving boosters to anyone 18 and older at high risk of severe disease from breakthrough infections.
ACIP instead limited its recommendation to people over 50 with such conditions after members expressed doubts about recommending boosters too broadly. So, staff added a third question that would allow a younger group to access boosters.
Members were less enthusiastic about this option. Vaccine advisers next voted 9-6 Thursday to allow younger adults, those ages 18 to 49, to get a Covid-19 vaccine dose if they have underlying health conditions.
A CDC analysis showed it was much more beneficial to give a booster dose to people 65 and older than to people in younger age groups.