An independent panel of vaccine advisers to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) voted unanimously on Oct. 21 to recommend booster shots of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines.
The recommendations from the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices (ACIP) fall in line with the emergency use authorizations issued by the Food and Drug Administration a day earlier.
ACIP recommended that a third dose of the Moderna vaccine can be offered at least six months after the primary series to people aged 65 and older, people aged 18 to 64 who are at high risk of severe COVID-19, and people aged 18 to 64 whose jobs frequently expose them to the virus.
“The ACIP recommendation is another step forward in our quest to address this devastating pandemic with a vaccine. We are grateful for the opportunity to provide individuals with another layer of protection against COVID-19,” Moderna Chief Executive Stéphane Bancel said in a statement.
ACIP also recommended another dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for people aged 18 years and older after at least two months after their first dose.
ACIP will issue a clinical guidance containing details on what people should consider in getting the booster shots and it will include whether people can mix and match vaccines of different brands.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky must now give the final decision to ACIP’s recommendations, which is expected to come within hours after the panel’s vote.
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