Oct 12 (Reuters) – More than 7 million Americans had extended their arms for updated COVID-19 vaccines as of Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said, even as bookings are still difficult for some. Find vaccination appointments or shots at no cost.
The updated vaccines from Moderna ( MRNA.O ) or Pfizer ( PFE.N ) and BioNTech ( 22UAy.DE ) are single-target shots targeting the XBB.1.5 Omicron subtype of the coronavirus, the dominant variant in the United States. Much of this year, however, has been overtaken as the virus continues to evolve.
Millions of doses of another updated COVID vaccine from Novavax ( NVAX.O ) were made available to Americans this week, the company said.
Distribution of the Pfizer and Moderna shots began after the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended it on September 12.
A booster targeting the original virus was released last year and another variant about 10 days ago. By September 28, 2022, nearly 7.6 million Americans had updated views.
U.S. public health officials are optimistic that Americans will get the new vaccines, and recommend that everyone 6 months and older get one.
But demand has fallen sharply since 2021, when the shots were first introduced at the height of the pandemic.
About 17% of the U.S. population, or 56.5 million people, eventually received last year’s version of the vaccine.
Reporting by Patrick Wingrove Editing by Bill Berkrot
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