The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is scheduled to meet from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET. There are no plans for the panel to vote on issues included on the agenda.
ACIP is a panel composed of outside medical experts in the fields of vaccinology, immunology, pediatrics, internal medicine, nursing, virology, public health, infectious diseases and other subspecialties. CDC typically accepts its recommendations once votes have been cast.
Tomorrow’s meeting was precipitated by this newly identified adverse event, Dr. William Schaffner, a professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and ACIP member, told CNN. “There will be no formal votes and will come to the conclusion that the risk of Covid is very high and the risks of the vaccine very low. Real, but very low,” he added.
ACIP’s goal tomorrow is to weigh in on the need for boosters and review what data is currently available and published. “What [ACIP] will demonstrate tomorrow is that the evidence is very sparse,” says Schaffner, which ultimately means that the group will not vote on boosters.
Earlier this month, Pfizer announced it would be seeking authorization to provide a third dose of its Covid-19 vaccine as a booster, citing data from Israel on the continued spread of the coronavirus and the limited efficacy against the more transmissible Delta variant.
Health officials, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, continue to say the US needs more data before recommending coronavirus vaccine boosters for anyone.
“The CDC and the FDA said that based on the data that we know right now, we don’t need a boost,” Fauci told CNN’s Chris Cuomo last week. “That doesn’t mean that that won’t change. We might need, as a matter of fact, at some time to give boosters either across the board or to certain select groups, such as the elderly or those with underlying conditions.”