Full FDA approval means more vaccine mandates, experts say

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Once the FDA grants full approval for COVID-19 vaccines, businesses and government agencies will no longer face the legal and public relations obstacles that have been preventing many of them from instating vaccination requirements for employees and customers, NBC News reported July 20.

The COVID-19 vaccines currently being administered under FDA-granted emergency use authorizations are produced by Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson. In May, Pfizer applied for its vaccine's full approval. Moderna did the same in June.

To many, the FDA's emergency use authorization indicates Americans should have the option to refuse whether to receive treatment. Current and former federal health officials told NBC News full FDA approval would allow more businesses and institutions to require COVID-19 vaccination, which could mean an influx of vaccinations among Americans who have yet to receive their shot.

"I think once the vaccines go through full FDA approval, everything should be on the table, and I think that everything will be on the table at the level of municipalities, states, employers, venues, government agencies," said Andy Slavitt, who stepped down from his role as senior advisor to the White House COVID-19 Response Team in June.

Mr. Slavitt also said government agencies "ought to rethink what's appropriate" after full FDA approval, as many COVID-19 vaccine survey respondents say they will only get vaccinated if they're required.

 

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