The independent advisory committee of the FDA, or the Food and Drug Administration, has recommended replacing Moderna and Pfizer’s original Covid vaccine used in the US. It suggests using the new bivalent omicron shots for everyone’s 1st two immunizations. The 21 members of the committee unanimously backed the proposal and agreed that it would simplify the U.S. Covid vaccination program.
What The Change in Covid vaccine May Mean
Suppose the Food and Drug Administration accepts the recommendation of the advisors. In that case, the U.S. will likely phase out the companies’ vaccines. These were developed in 2020 against the original Covid-19 strain that emerged in China.
Moderna and Pfizer’s omicron shots have authorization as only boosters currently. The 1st two doses are still their old shots based on the original Covid strain.
The drugmakers’ bivalent omicron shots target the omicron BA.5 subvariant and the original strain. In the near future, they may be put to use for the entire vaccination series.
The proposed change will only affect people who have not yet received their 2-dose primary vaccination series. However, no timeline is provided for this change if the FDA accepts the panel’s recommendation.
This recommendation to take up a single formulation across all doses has come as the FDA has been trying to streamline Covid vaccination for an easier system for the public and healthcare workers to understand.
According to the proposal, most people exposed to the Covid spike protein two times, either through infection or vaccination, will only receive 1 Covid shot a year. However, older adults and other people with compromised immune systems can require two shots.
The FDA’s goal is to start flu vaccines and updated Covid vaccines simultaneously in the fall. This will make it easy for all to get their shots in 1 visit. The advantage of this is if people can see the Covid-19 vaccine and the influenza vaccine occurring at the same visit, it will facilitate a vaccination program that can lead to more people getting the vaccination.