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Next on FDA’s agenda: Booster shots of Moderna, J&J vaccines

A health official prepares a syringe with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine prior to administering it during a mass Covid-19 vaccination drive in Nairobi on September 17, 2021. (Simon MAINA / AFP)
A health official prepares a syringe with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine prior to administering it during a mass Covid-19 vaccination drive in Nairobi on September 17, 2021. (Simon MAINA / AFP)

With many Americans who got Pfizer vaccinations already rolling up their sleeves for a booster shot, millions of others who received the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine wait anxiously to learn when it’s their turn.

Federal regulators begin tackling that question this week.

On Thursday and Friday, the Food and Drug Administration convenes its independent advisers for the first stage in the process of deciding whether extra doses of the two vaccines should be dispensed and, if so, who should get them and when. The final go-ahead is not expected for at least another week.

After the FDA advisers give their recommendation, the agency itself will make an official decision on whether to authorize boosters. Then next week, a panel convened by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will offer more specifics on who should get them. Its decision is subject to approval by the CDC director.

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