Pfizer boosters up first, Moderna expected to follow, Fauci says

Kenny Lun of Sun City Center knows where he will be the moment the FDA OKs the Pfizer booster.

"I will be the first in line," he said.

The 64-year-old has numerous family members who are immunocompromised.

Lucky for him, he got Pfizer nearly eight months ago, the brand that will likely be first up for boosters.

"(It is just a matter of) being extra careful," he said.

After the nation saw daily COVID-19 deaths drop to about 200 on July 4, September has seen them near 1,500. Florida had nearly 5,500 deaths in August, the most since January.

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Even though medical workers say most deaths are among the unvaccinated, studies suggest Pfizer can lose a few percentage points a month of effectiveness.

"Looks like Pfizer has their data in, likely would meet the deadline," Dr. Anthony Fauci, the chief White House medical advisor said. "We hope that Moderna would also be able to do it so we could do it simultaneously. But if not, we’ll do it sequentially."

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Indeed, those who have gotten Moderna, like Mike Breen of Lake Wales, will have to wait, though studies say antibodies from that vaccine appear to stick around longer.

His wife is a teacher, so he says it's important for him.

"We think about it quite a bit, though there is only so much we can do," said Breen.

Dr. Fauci did address the question of whether it is OK to mix-and-match, such as getting a booster different from the one you're vaccinated with.

"We are suggesting -- and hopefully it will work out that way -- that if you got Pfizer, you will then boost with Pfizer. If you got Moderna, you will be boosting with Moderna," said Fauci.

Dr. Fauci says studies are being done to determine whether it's safe and/or effective to mix-and-match booster shots.

Moderna's studies on boosters are expected to be submitted to the FDA shortly.