But the Omicron booster set in place will hopefully clear things up. Republicans as a whole are now evenly divided over such encouragement, with 45 percent in favor and 43 percent opposed. In September, those numbers were 54 percent and 35 percent, respectively. It seems like we are the only ones lagging behind. The UK is now on board to distribute the Moderna vaccine booster against the Omicron subvariant BA.
But BA.1 is no longer circulating; the BA.4 and BA.5 subvariants eclipsed it in the spring. Earlier this summer, in June, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) made a request to manufacturers to develop a booster specifically targeting those two subvariants, and last week, both Moderna and the Pfizer-BioNTech collaboration said on Wednesday they have submitted data about their BA.4/BA.5 vaccines to FDA.
Meanwhile, President Joe Biden’s administration has already placed an order for 170 million doses of such vaccines. (Pfizer and BioNTech have also submitted the data to EMA; the European Union could first approve a BA.1-based booster and switch to BA.4/BA.5 vaccines later.)
The Shots Are Expected To Be Released Around Labor Day
As we gear up for the Fall and Winter seasons, it’s perfect timing to release the booster. If external experts recommend the shots, and CDC Director Rochelle Walensky agrees, some boosters may be available starting this weekend, with more showing up in pharmacies, doctors offices and clinics after Labor Day.