Surgeon general expects more businesses will mandate COVID-19 vaccine after FDA approval
The Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine is expected to receive FDA approval Monday, and Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy is predicting this will lead to more private businesses requiring employees to get their shots.
In an interview with “Fox News Sunday,” Murthy also said he believes that some people who have yet to get vaccinated may have been waiting for FDA approval and will now feel comfortable doing so.
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“This is important for a couple of reasons,” Murthy said about the FDA approval. “Number one, there were some people who may have been waiting for this, and who may come up in the sense, so to speak, to get vaccinated. So, it may help increase vaccination rates to some extent. But I also think that there are universities and businesses that have been considering putting in vaccine requirements in order to create a safer, a workplace, a learning environment. And I think this announcement from the FDA would likely encourage them and make them feel more comfortable in putting some requirements in place.”
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine – like others from Moderna and Johnson & Johnson – are permitted by the FDA under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), which is not the same as approval. The EUA for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was first issued on Dec. 11, 2020, for people ages 16 and older. This was expanded on May 10, 2021, to cover those between the ages of 12 and 15.
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An increasing number of companies have already announced that they are requiring or will soon be requiring their employees to be fully vaccinated before heading back to the office amid fears of the highly contagious delta variant of COVID-19. Citigroup, Google, Twitter, Lyft and McDonald’s Corporation are among those who have said that they will be requiring employees to get vaccinated before returning to the office.
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Delta Airlines is requiring all new hires to be vaccinated, while Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are requiring employees to disclose their vaccination status.
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine comes in two doses, but a third shot has been authorized for certain people with immunocompromised conditions.
FOX Business’ Daniella Genovese contributed to this report.