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Issue 1592
Issue 1,592: September 29, 2021
Top Stories

Featured Resources

Notable Publications

Upcoming Events


Top Stories


CDC recommends a booster dose for recipients of a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine primary series who are age 65 years or older, who reside in long- term care facilities, who are age 18 through 64 with underlying health conditions, or who are at high risk of occupational or institutional exposure to COVID-19

On September 22, the FDA updated its Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine (also known as Comirnaty) to authorize administration of a third (booster) dose in certain individuals. The next day, CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) made interim recommendations for certain populations to receive a booster dose of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 Vaccine at least 6 months after completing their Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine primary series. In addition, the CDC Director recommended a booster dose for Pfizer-BioNTech primary series recipients in certain high risk occupational and institutional settings. The recommendations are:
  • people age 65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings should receive a booster dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series;
  • people age 50 through 64 with certain underlying medical conditions should receive a booster dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer- BioNTech primary series;
  • people age 18 through 49 who are at high risk for severe COVID-19 due to certain underlying medical conditions may receive a booster dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks; and 
  • people age 18 through 64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a booster dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer- BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks.

Individuals requesting a booster dose due to an underlying medical condition are not required to provide documentation of their condition; self-attestation is sufficient.
 
CDC has issued updated clinical considerations providing guidance on these booster recommendations. Discussions on booster doses for recipients of Moderna and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) COVID-19 vaccines will be held following FDA authorization of additional doses of those products. Due to limitations of the FDA authorization, Moderna and Janssen vaccine recipients are not recommended to receive a Pfizer-BioNTech booster at this time.
 
ACIP noted that the booster recommendations do not change the definition of who is considered “fully vaccinated” for public health or administrative purposes. “Fully vaccinated” status begins 2 weeks after completing a 2-dose mRNA vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) series or the single dose of the Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine (Johnson & Johnson).
 
In making these recommendations, ACIP members and the CDC Director emphasized that vaccination of unvaccinated people continues to be the top priority. Data presented at the meeting indicate hospitalization rates for unvaccinated adults were 13- to 23-times higher (varying by age) than for vaccinated adults.
 
During its two-day meeting, ACIP also heard presentations (presentation slides available online) from CDC experts on the current epidemiology of COVID-19 disease in the United States and updates on COVID-19 vaccine safety and effectiveness assessed through multiple surveillance systems. Additional presentations highlighted the growing body of evidence supporting the benefits and safety of COVID-19 vaccination during any stage of pregnancy as routinely recommended by CDC and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), among others. Despite this recommendation, only 30% of pregnant people are currently fully vaccinated with COVID-19 vaccine.
 
Clinicians administering Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine should give vaccine recipients the updated (September 22, 2021) EUA Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers. Clinicians should familiarize themselves with the revised Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine EUA Fact Sheet for Healthcare Providers.
 
Future ACIP Meetings
The next announced ACIP meetings are scheduled for today, September 29 (see story in “Upcoming Meetings”), and the regularly scheduled meeting on October 20–21. Additional meetings may be announced; information about past and future ACIP meetings may be found on the ACIP website.
 
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“Use of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine in Persons Aged ≥16 Years: Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices—United States, September 2021” published in MMWR

CDC published Use of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine in Persons Aged ≥16 Years: Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices—United States, September 2021 in the September 24 issue of MMWR. This publication predates the September 25, 2021, authorization of booster doses for many recipients; see story above. A portion of the summary appears below.

On August 23, 2021, the Food and Drug Administration granted full approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for persons aged ≥16 years....

On August 30, 2021, after a systematic review of the data, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices revised its interim recommendation to a standard recommendation for use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in persons aged ≥16 years for the prevention of COVID-19....

Continued use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, now fully approved by the FDA in persons aged ≥16 years, is recommended based on increased certainty that its benefits (prevention of asymptomatic infection, COVID-19, and associated hospitalization and death) outweigh vaccine- associated risks....


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Use lessons from COVID-19 vaccination efforts to protect more patients from influenza! Two IAC influenza webinars for vaccine providers are now available for online viewing.   

On September 20, IAC hosted a webinar titled "Translating COVID-19 Strategies to Improve Influenza Seasonal Flu Vaccination Efforts." The entire webinar is now archived for viewing. The topics included:

  • Information to improve influenza immunization for under-served populations and improving vaccine equity
  • Public health strategies to reach small communities
  • Making a strong recommendation for influenza vaccination this season
  • Pharmacists’ lessons learned for improving vaccine access and vaccine equity for vulnerable populations

Also archived for viewing is IAC's September 9 webinar titled "The Continued Threat of Influenza and How to Sustain Influenza Vaccination Efforts." Please share both webinar links with your colleagues.

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CDC launches "I Get It" flu vaccination campaign

CDC launched the "I Get It" campaign to encourage everyone age 6 months and older to get vaccinated against influenza and to share their reasons for getting vaccinated. Campaign materials include:


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CMS launches new Medicare.gov feature to compare nursing homes by COVID-19 vaccination rate

CMS is making it easier to check COVID-19 vaccination rates for nursing home staff and residents with a new feature on Medicare.gov. Vaccination data is now available in a user-friendly format to help people make informed decisions when choosing a nursing home for themselves or a loved one. CMS and CDC continue using this data to monitor vaccine uptake among residents and staff and identify facilities that may need assistance to respond to the pandemic.



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IAC's Influenza Vaccination Honor Roll for mandatory healthcare worker vaccination now features 1,156 organizations, including two new facilities

There are now 1,156 organizations enrolled in IAC's Influenza Vaccination Honor Roll. The honor roll recognizes hospitals, long-term care facilities, medical practices, pharmacies, professional organizations, health departments, and other government entities that take a stand for patient safety by implementing mandatory influenza vaccination policies for healthcare personnel.

Since September 8, when IAC Express last reported on the Influenza Vaccination Honor Roll, two additional healthcare organizations have been enrolled.

  • Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc, Frederick, MD
  • Delaware Valley Community Health, Philadelphia, PA

To be included in the Influenza Vaccination Honor Roll, the institutional mandate you report must require influenza vaccination for all staff. Additionally, the application must describe measures to prevent transmission of influenza from unvaccinated personnel to patients (e.g., masking for the entire work shift, reassignment to non-patient-care duties, dismissal).

IAC urges qualifying healthcare organizations to complete the Application page.

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IAC Spotlight! IAC's Handouts web page provides free access to hundreds of vaccination-related handouts and fact sheets

IAC's Handouts for Patients and Staff web page leads users to hundreds of free vaccination-related patient handouts and fact sheets for healthcare professionals. All items are ready to print, copy, and distribute widely!

Visit the Handouts for Patients and Staff web page to view more than 300 handouts sorted by:



From the main page, you can search on any of the 23 topics. Some of the most popular are:

The right-hand side of the web page includes links to some of IAC's most popular handouts, including:

You can also view an alphabetical listing of IAC’s more than 300 ready-to-print staff educational materials and patient handouts.

Visit IAC's Handouts for Patients and Staff web page on Immunize.org today!

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Journalists interview IAC experts
 
Journalists seek out IAC experts to help explain vaccines to the public and policy makers. We help the media understand and communicate the complex work vaccinators do. Here is a selection of our recent citations.

Related Link

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Vaccines in the news

These recent articles convey the potential risks of vaccine-preventable diseases and the importance of vaccination.

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Featured Resources


Spread the word, not the virus! IAC offers FREE “I Got My COVID-19 Vaccine” buttons and stickers to those promoting vaccination in hesitant communities. Available in English and Spanish.

Any group or person promoting COVID-19 vaccination can order IAC’s FREE “I Got My COVID-19 Vaccine” buttons and stickers, provided with support from CDC. Available in English and Spanish, the buttons and stickers look great on lab coats, uniforms, jackets, lanyards, ID badges, or backpacks to show confidence in COVID-19 vaccination. Access this order form to request the FREE buttons and stickers for your outreach efforts while supplies last.

    

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Notable Publications


MMWR Recap: “Comparative Effectiveness of Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) Vaccines in Preventing COVID-19 Hospitalizations among Adults without Immunocompromising Conditions—United States, March–August 2021”

CDC recently published the following article as an MMWR Early Release:
  • Comparative Effectiveness of Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) Vaccines in Preventing COVID-19 Hospitalizations among Adults without Immunocompromising Conditions—United States, March–August 2021 (MMWR, September 24, HTML or PDF)

Related Link

  • MMWR main page provides access to MMWR Weekly and its companion publications

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"Association between Human Papillomavirus Infection among Pregnant Women and Preterm Birth" published in JAMA Network Open

In the September 1 issue, JAMA Network Open published Association between Human Papillomavirus Infection among Pregnant Women and Preterm Birth. The conclusions and relevance section appears below. 

The study's results suggest that persistent HPV-16/18 infection is associated with an increased risk of preterm birth, independent of cervical treatment. Future studies should investigate the association of HPV vaccination and vaccination programs with the risk of preterm birth.

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Upcoming Events


Watch today (September 29 at 10 a.m. ET): ACIP meeting on zoster, pneumococcal, and hepatitis B vaccination and other topics; no registration required

CDC will convene its Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) today, September 29, starting at 10:00 a.m. (ET). The committee will discuss zoster, pneumococcal, hepatitis B, tick-borne encephalitis (TBE), and orthopoxvirus vaccination.



No registration is required to watch webcasts of live ACIP meetings or listen via telephone. Opportunities for public comment are described at the website.

View the agenda.

Related Links

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Virtual: CDC offers archived webinar for clinicians titled "What Clinicians Need to Know about the Latest CDC Recommendations for Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Booster Vaccination"

CDC’s archive of its Clinical Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA) webinars now includes the event from September 28, 2021, What Clinicians Need to Know about the Latest CDC Recommendations for Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Booster Vaccination. CDC provided the following description of this session:

This COCA Call will give clinicians an overview of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster vaccination. Clinicians will learn about the vaccine booster recommendations, safety of booster dose, and clinical guidance for using the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster vaccine.
 
Access more information about this webinar: What Clinicians Need to Know about the Latest CDC Recommendations for Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Booster Vaccination.

Related Link

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Virtual: CDC and AAP will host webinar for clinicians titled "2021–22 Recommendations for Influenza Prevention and Treatment in Children: An Update for Pediatric Practitioners" on October 7

CDC and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) will host a Clinical Outreach and Communication Activity (COCA) webinar on October 7, 2021 from 2:00–3:00 p.m. (ET) titled "2021–22 Recommendations for Influenza Prevention and Treatment in Children: An Update for Pediatric Practitioners." Webinar details will be available on CDC’s COCA Call web page the week of the webinar. During this COCA call, experts from AAP and CDC will discuss strategies primary care providers and medical subspecialists can use to improve, prevent, and control influenza among children this season.

Related Link

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Virtual: NFID to hold influenza/pneumococcal news conference on October 7

On Thursday, October 7, the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID) will host its 2021 Annual NFID Influenza/Pneumococcal News Conference from 9:30–10:30 a.m. (ET). Confirmed panelists include:

  • Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, MPH, CDC director
  • William Schaffner, MD, NFID medical director
  • Laura E. Riley, MD, obstetrician and gynecologist-in-chief, New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center
  • Cedric “Jamie” Rutland, MD, CEO, West Coast Lung; COVID-19 medical director, Private Health Management
  • Patricia A. (Patsy) Stinchfield, MS, CPNP, NFID president-elect; pediatric nurse practitioner, Children’s Minnesota

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Virtual: Register now for online NFID Clinical Vaccinology Course, November 15–17; CME/CNE available

The National Foundation of Infectious Diseases (NFID) Fall 2021 Clinical Vaccinology Course will be held online November 15–17. This 3-day online course focuses on new developments and issues related to use of vaccines. Expert faculty provide the latest information on vaccines, including updated recommendations for vaccinations across the lifespan, and innovative and practical strategies for ensuring timely and appropriate immunization.

Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Continuing Nursing Education (CNE) credit will be offered.

Register for the online course ($750 fee).

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About IAC Express
The Immunization Action Coalition welcomes redistribution of this issue of IAC Express or selected articles. When you do so, please add a note that the Immunization Action Coalition is the source of the material and provide a link to this issue.

IAC Express is supported in part by Grant No. 6NH23IP922550 from the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, CDC. Its contents are solely the responsibility of IAC and do not necessarily represent the official views of CDC.

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