By Mike Murphy
Dr. Anthony Fauci on Sunday said he was not disappointed by an FDA’s panel’s rejection last week of a plan to start giving widespread COVID-19 vaccine boosters, and tried to clear up some of the public’s confusion over boosters.
“I don’t think they made a mistake,” Fauci told CNN in an interview Sunday, despite the Biden administration’s previously stated target of starting boosters for those fully vaccinated starting Sept 20 .
Fauci, the White House’s top pandemic adviser, said a third shot may still be approved if new data shows it’ll be effective.
“The goal of this particular decision was to prevent people from getting serious disease who are at risk, such as the elderly and those that have underlying conditions,” Fauci told ABC News in a separate interview Sunday.
When asked by ABC’s “This Week” co-anchor Martha Raddatz about potential public confusion about if and when most people will get a booster, Fauci said people needs to be patient and understand how the process works.
“These are the kinds of things that when you make a decision, you don’t snap your finger and it gets rolled out the next day and that’s, I think, the thing that the people in the United States need to understand,” Fauci said.
“The plan was that we have to be ready to do this as soon as the decision is made, and when you have a plan, you put a date on it and you say we want to be able to get ready to roll out on the week of September the 20th,” he added. “So giving that date, I don’t think was confusing. We needed a date to be able to say, let’s get ready to roll this out, pending the decision of the deliberation by the FDA and ultimately the CDC.”
The Food and Drug Administration’s advisory panels will continue to monitor data as studies about vaccine efficacy and boosters continue to roll in in the weeks ahead.
“The story is not over because more and more data is coming in and will be coming in,” Fauci said.
Fauci added that he expects the vaccine to be approved for children ages 5-11 to be approved this fall.