FDA to Allow Immunocompromised Americans to Receive Third COVID Vaccine Dose

The FDA is planning to allow immunocompromised Americans to receive a third COVID-19 vaccine dose on Thursday. 

According to NBC News, the health agency will expand the emergency use authorizations for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to allow them to be administered as booster shots.

The move comes after CDC advisers urged increased action on extra doses for those with compromised immune systems, as doctors have made it clear that they are still vulnerable to the virus post-vaccine due to a weakened immune response. 

CDC data shows that an estimated 2.7 percent of adults in the U.S. are immunocompromised, though it is unclear exactly which groups would be covered under the expected FDA authorization. 

These patients include organ transplant recipients, cancer patients, and people with HIV, among others. 

The authorization does not include fully vaccinated, otherwise healthy people, as both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have proven to be highly effective at preventing hospitalizations and death.

The CDC advisory group is scheduled to meet Friday to vote on whether to officially recommend a third booster shot.