FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 17, 2021
Media Contact: Logan Anderson, Virginia Department of Health PIO, email@example.com
Statement from Virginia State Vaccination Coordinator Dr. Danny Avula on FDA Advisory Committee Vote on Pfizer-BioNTech Booster Doses
(Richmond, Va.) – The following statement is from state vaccination coordinator Dr. Danny Avula, MD, MPH.
“Today, an advisory committee of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) voted in favor of recommending booster doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to Virginians 65 years and up and those at high risk for severe COVID-19. This is simply a recommendation at this point, and booster doses will not be available in Virginia until the FDA issues an updated authorization, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issues new guidance. The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice is scheduled to meet September 22-23, and we do not expect CDC to release recommendations before late next week at the earliest.
“VDH will continue its planning efforts with pharmacies, providers, hospitals and other partners as well as efforts to establish other vaccination sites to ensure that once the CDC issues guidance, eligible Virginians will be able to access a booster dose. VDH will provide information about accessing a booster dose on vaccinate.virginia.gov when more guidance is available.
“Those who are unvaccinated remain at the highest risk of severe illness due to COVID-19. Everyone 12 or older who lives or works in Virginia is eligible to be vaccinated. To find free vaccines nearby, visit vaccinate.virginia.gov or call 877-VAX-IN-VA (877-829-4682, TTY users call 7-1-1). Assistance is available in English, Spanish, and more than 100 other languages.”