Biden Receives Covid-19 Booster Shot
President Biden received a booster shot of the Covid-19 vaccine on Monday and appealed to unvaccinated Americans to protect themselves against the virus.
“Boosters are important,” Mr. Biden said. “But the most important thing we need to do is get more people vaccinated.”
“The vast majority of Americans are doing the right thing,” he added, saying those who hadn’t gotten a first dose were causing “an awful lot of damage for the rest of the country.”
Mr. Biden received the shot days after the Food and Drug Administration cleared a booster developed by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE for people 65 and older and certain other adults at high risk of severe illness. The decision was also backed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Mr. Biden, 78, got his second dose of the Pfizer vaccine on Jan. 11. He told reporters Monday that first lady Jill Biden, 70, also plans to get a booster shot.
The Biden administration initially planned to make boosters available to all U.S. adults beginning this month, but the FDA issued a narrower authorization after agency staff and advisers said the evidence so far didn’t support broad use of a third dose.
CDC Director Rochelle Walensky recommended boosters for seniors and many adults with underlying health conditions, including cancer, chronic lung and kidney disease, and heart disease, as well as diabetes, obesity, pregnancy and smoking.
Breaking from the agency’s advisory panel, Dr. Walensky also said a third dose should be made available to front-line workers such as nurses, teachers and grocery-store employees.
Those eligible—people who were fully vaccinated with the Pfizer-BioNTech shot—can get a booster at least six months after their second dose.
The FDA has said it needs more time to review use of extra doses of Moderna Inc. and Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccines.
U.S. health authorities have said boosters will help curb the pandemic and the spread of the highly transmissible Delta variant.