Pfizer seeks FDA OK for vaccine booster dose

NEW YORK – Pfizer is seeking U.S. approval of a booster dose of its two-shot COVID-19 vaccine.

The drugmaker announced Wednesday it has started the approval process for a third dose of its vaccine for Americans ages 16 and older. The company says it expects to complete its application with the Food and Drug Administration by the end of this week.

U.S. health officials announced last week plans to dispense COVID-19 booster shots to all Americans to shore up their protection amid the surging delta variant of the coronavirus. Pfizer’s vaccine received full regulatory approval this week.

While health officials say vaccine protection against coronavirus infection wanes over time, the three vaccines used in the U.S. made by Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson are still providing strong protection against hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19.

Earlier this month, U.S. regulators said transplant recipients or others with weakened immune systems can get an extra dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.