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President Joe Biden said that most Americans with the Pfizer Inc.-BioNTech SE Covid-19 vaccine will be able to get a booster shot, after one of his top health officials overruled an advisory panel to expand eligibility.

“The decision of which booster shot to give, when to start the shot, and who will get them, is left to the scientists and the doctors," Biden said in remarks at the White House. “That’s what happened here."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director, Rochelle Walensky, issued a statement late Thursday advising that booster shots could be given to people with the Pfizer vaccine 6 months after the second of their first two shots. 

Her statement broadened eligibility for the shots beyond the recommendations of a CDC advisory panel and the Food and Drug Administration, which authorized Pfizer boosters last week.

In particular, Walensky said that people age 18 to 64, who have no underlying medical conditions but who work in places with a high chance of Covid-19 exposure, would be able to get a shot.

She also opened eligibility to those 65 and up and those age 50 to 64 with underlying medical conditions, saying both groups should get a booster.

And she said people age 18 to 49 with underlying medical conditions could get a booster “based on their individual benefits and risks" without saying whether they should get a third shot. 

 

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.

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