The latest on the Covid-19 pandemic

National Vaccine Committee chair says boosters will be a requirement, timing of them still fluid

Booster shots for Covid-19 will be a requirement, however, the timing of such is not yet set in stone, according to Dr. Robert Hopkins, National Vaccine Committee Chair for the Dept. of Health and Human Services and chief of the Division of General Internal Medicine at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS).



Hopkins spoke with CNN at a pop-up vaccine clinic in Little Rock, Arkansas, Saturday afternoon.  

“We are going to need boosters at some point, but right now we really don’t know when that’s going to be, or how we’re going to have to target that strategy about boosters,” Dr. Hopkins said. 

“We know that the vaccines we have available right now are very effective at preventing both the variant viruses that we’re seeing, as well as what I call traditional COVID,” Hopkins told CNN. “Those vaccines don’t prevent all infections, but they’re really pretty effective at preventing infection, and they’re very effective at preventing severe infection, leading to hospitalization or morbidity, so I’m pretty comfortable that we’re doing pretty well with our current vaccines, I know that at some point we’ll need to have those, those boosters, but we need to answer a number of questions between now and then.”

Hopkins thinks that full FDA approval of the vaccines would help the cause. 

“I’m hopeful that we can get that full approval fairly soon. I know that there’s been regular communication between the Pfizer, the Moderna, and the Johnson and Johnson folks, and the FDA. I think that that would help at least with a part of our population that’s been hesitant, to know that this vaccine has full approval,” he said.

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