Gov. Kathy Hochul Joins 14 Other States in Urging Residents to Get Boosters: Hours Before Likely Final CDC Approval
By Yehudit Garmaise
After the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 booster for all fully-vaccinated adults, who are over 18, the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), which will now further review the safety of the boosters, is responsible for providing final approval for Americans third shots: or second if the first was Johnson & Johnson.
"The vaccine is safe, free, and the best way to prevent the spread of this deadly virus in our communities as we head into the colder months,” said Governor Hochul, who joined 14 other states today in urging New Yorkers to get boosters, even before the CDC gives its final approval. “If you want to protect yourself and loved ones from COVID-19, get the vaccine. If you are vaccinated already, get the booster."
Just last week, the COVID booster was only recommended for people over the age of 65, or those who are at high risk for becoming infected with COVID, due to medical conditions, where they live, or where they work, however, this week, Health and Hospitals CEO Mitch Katz, MD, said that because New Yorkers live in such close proximity to each other, all New Yorkers are considered at high risk and should get their boosters, which a British study recently said could bolster recipients’ immunity back up to 94%, after waning slightly over time.
As winter approaches, bringing with it more gatherings indoors, which can lead to the spread of infection, today, the FDA authorized the Pfizer and Moderna booster COVID-19 vaccines for everyone 18 and older who is already considered fully vaccinated, to provide extra protection in the face of a possible winter surge in cases.
In fact, the FDA’s authorization came in today, as many states face upticks in COVID-19 infections. The only way to stop rising COVID cases and breakthrough cases that bring patients to the hospital, many health experts say, is to vaccinate the unvaccinated and strengthen that immunity with booster shots.
“We have to stay more relentless than the virus,” said NYC Health Commission this week, as he also made a large push for New Yorkers to take advantage of the many city vaccination sites or the city’s vaccination-at-home option to make sure to get their boosters.
Before taking a vote on the final approval of the boosters for everyone over 18, the CDC’s vaccine advisory committee will review and debate the data this afternoon, and Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH, will need to provide her final signoff.