The US Food and Drug Administration granted full approval this week for the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for people 16 years of age and older. This is the first of the coronavirus vaccines to receive full approval from the FDA.
This new advancement has raised as many questions as it hopes to answer. What does full approval mean for those who are already vaccinated? What about for those who have yet to be vaccinated — could it help to reduce hesitancy, or are those worried about ‘forced’ mandates going to just dig in harder against the vaccines? Does it have any impact on expediting vaccines for younger children?
For months now, there have been three vaccines that were approved under emergency use authorization, or EUA. These are the vaccines made by Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson. Pfizer was the first of the vaccines to receive the EUA, and it’s also the first of the vaccines that applied for full approval. Moderna’s vaccine is currently under review, and approval is expected within a matter of weeks. Johnson & Johnson’s request for full approval has not yet been submitted to the FDA.
Full FDA approval is a process that usually requires at least six months of safety data. The EUA was given after two months of safety data because this is a global pandemic and a public health emergency. Hundreds of millions of people around the world have now received the Pfizer vaccine, and there is more than enough evidence that the vaccine is safe and effective. The final stamp of approval came via the FDA on Monday, August 23rd.
BREAKING: Dr. Fauci announces his support of vaccine mandates for all eligible school children in America. The highly contagious Delta variant is currently surging — and killing innocent students who have been forced back to school. RT IF YOU AGREE WITH DR. FAUCI!
— Occupy Democrats (@OccupyDemocrats) August 29, 2021
Some polls, including from the Kaiser Family Foundation, have suggested that as many as 3 in 10 people cite lack of full approval as a primary reason for not getting the vaccine, but there will still be holdouts regardless of approval.
Anti-vaxxer anti-masker Marc Bernier is a long time Daytona Beach radio propagandist, a hero far right hero. He compared the life saving measure of vaccine mandates to Nazism.
He just died of Covid. Don’t ever be like him and never let your children grow up to be like him.
— Ricky Davila (@TheRickyDavila) August 29, 2021
Dr. Irwin Redlener, founding director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University and an MSNBC Public Health Analyst, joined NBC’s Joshua Johnson to discuss the process behind full FDA approval and its possible impact on vaccination rates. Watch their discussion, below.