NEW YORK - The Food and Drug Administration, which approved the use of boosters for COVID-19 by two drug manufacturers Friday, bypassed the recommendation of an advisory committee. The group was opposed to the booster for all adults in the United States.
A member of that committee, Dr. Paul Offit, explained to FOX 5 NY morning program, Good Day New York, why a third dose was not necessary.
"If you got two doses you have a high level of protection of serious illness and that has held up," said Offit. "That has not faded at all. You are still going to be protested from serious illness, what does fade is protection against mild illness like cold symptoms. That does fade."
Dr. Offit went on to say that people aren't clear on what the third dose provides.
"If you are over 65 you benefit from a third dose. If you are over 50 and have a medical condition and puts you at risk for severe COVID, I think you benefit from a third dose. If you live and work in a long-term care facility, you benefit from a third dose. For everybody else, you can consider getting a third dose but realize you're already protected from serious illness associated with the first doses you already got."
The CDC’s influential advisory panel, called the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, is set to meet from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. ET to discuss expanding booster shot eligibility. The final step — CDC’s official recommendation — could come soon after the meeting.
Confusion over whether a third dose was truly needed began with an outbreak over the summer, according to Dr. Offit.
"The mistake we made during that outbreak was that we labeled those milder, asymptomatic infections a breakthrough which implies failure. That's not a failure. That is as good as those vaccines can do in general," said Dr. Offit.