In an effort to get a jump on a potential spike of COVID-19 this fall and winter, health officials are reportedly expected to decide on a new COVID-19 design in early July, according to recent reports.
Dr. Peter Marks, Vaccine Chief of the FDA, said the formal decision on the new vaccine design is expected after the FDA advisory committee meets on June 28th to review data from the vaccine companies about the versions of new vaccines currently being tested. From there, the FDA will decide which vaccine companies should proceed with, which is reportedly estimated based on what could be used as the best protection of new COVID-19 variants this fall and winter.
In a statement about the FDA’s plans, Dr. Marks said, “We’ll have to make some decision by early July to make sure that the manufacturers know what we’re looking to do, so that they know what they have to start producing in large quantities.” He also stressed that another surge of the virus is expected during the colder months this year.
Among the additional topics under consideration involve an updated way to give people “the longest duration of a high level of protection” with new vaccines—mainly because it’s unrealistic to expect people to continue to have COVID-19 booster shots every few months.
Meanwhile, health officials are also keeping a close eye on the current COVID-19 surge, as cases are steadily rising with almost a third of the U.S. among the medium or high-risk community for the virus.
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