US approves "mix and match" coronavirus booster jabs

Silver Spring, MarylandThe US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday approved the use of heterologous booster jabs for currently FDA-approved Covid-19 vaccines as part of an expansion of the use of boosters.

The FDA has approved the use of booster shots from each of the available Covid-19 vaccines, regardless which vaccine was first administered (stock image).
The FDA has approved the use of booster shots from each of the available Covid-19 vaccines, regardless which vaccine was first administered (stock image).  © 123RF/subfocus93

The agency approved the use of a booster dose of Moderna at least six months after the first two doses for people over 65 and younger people who are considered high-risk because of their health or occupations.

A booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which only needs to be administered once, was approved two months after completion of primary regimen to people 18 years of age and older.

The FDA also approved the use "of each of the available COVID-19 vaccines as a heterologous (or 'mix and match') booster dose in eligible individuals" following the primary regimen with a different jab.

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"The availability of these authorized boosters is important for continued protection against COVID-19 disease," acting FDA Commissioner Janet Woodcock said.

Peter Marks, director of the FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said the expansion of the use of boosters is "based on the available data and information and follows the input from the members of our advisory committee who were supportive of the use of a booster dose of these vaccines in eligible populations."

"We will work to accrue additional data as quickly as possible to further assess the benefits and risks of the use of booster doses in additional populations and plan to update the healthcare community and public with our determination in the coming weeks," Marks added.

Cover photo: 123RF/subfocus93

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