The drug maker said Wednesday that it has started the application process for a third dose of its vaccine for people aged 16 and older. The company added it will complete the application with the Food and Drug Administration by the end of this week.
The company’s move follows an announcement by the US health officials last week of plans to give Covid-19 booster shots to all Americans to shore up their protection amid the surging delta variant of the virus. Officials said it is “very clear” that the vaccines’ protection against the Covid-19 infections wanes over time.
Pfizer’s vaccine received full FDA approval earlier this week; it had been used since last December under an emergency-use authorisation.
The three vaccines used in the US made by Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson are still preventing hospitalisations and deaths. But the vaccines don’t appear quite as strong against the highly contagious Delta variant as they were against earlier versions of the virus.
Earlier this month, the US regulators said transplant recipients or others with weakened immune systems can get an extra dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.