Since the first COVID-19 vaccine became available in December 2020, more than 660 million doses have been administered across the country.
Nearly all of them are primary series vaccinations: First and second doses of Pfizer and Moderna.
In total it is about 70% of the total population. The FDA is looking to change its strategy on COVID-19 vaccines by treating them like an annual flu vaccine.
At their upcoming meeting, the FDA will be discussing a transition away from a two-dose primary series and focus on a single bivalent vaccination for most.
They would still recommend the two-dose series for certain young children and older adults with compromised immune systems. This will come with a process to update the COVID-19 vaccine on an annual basis.
A bivalent vaccine is one that includes both the original COVID-19 strain and components of the omicron variant. As omicron continues to mutate, the vaccine would be updated, much like the flu shot is updated today.
A total of 230 million Americans have received the primary series of COVID-19 vaccinations since they were released. Almost as many, 171 million, received the flu shot just this season, while only 51 million Americans have received a bivalent COVID-19 vaccine.
According to a map released by the CDC, only one state has a bivalent vaccination rate above 30%: Vermont.
Most states range in their vaccination rates between 11% and 15%, with higher rates found in the west coast and New England. Southern states have the lowest bivalent vaccination rate with most being under 10%.
FDA will consider treating COVID-19 vaccine like an annual flu shot – ABC15 Arizona in Phoenix