Coverage about COVID-19 Vaccines

January 13, 2022

Supreme Court Strikes Down Biden’s COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate For Large Companies.

The New York Times (1/13, A1, Liptak) reports on Thursday, the US Supreme Court “blocked the Biden administration from enforcing a vaccine-or-testing mandate for large employers, dealing a blow to a key element of the White House’s plan to address the pandemic as coronavirus cases resulting from the Omicron variant are on the rise.” However, “in a modest victory for President Biden, the court allowed a more limited mandate requiring health care workers at facilities receiving federal money to be vaccinated.” The vote for the employer mandate was 6-3, with the liberal justices dissenting, and 5-4 for the mandate for healthcare workers.

        The Washington Post (1/13, A1, Barnes) reports the ruling against the employer mandate was “a dramatic blow to the federal government’s most far-reaching initiative to combat the coronavirus and boost the country’s lagging vaccination rate.” The Court has been in favor “of state requirements targeting the pandemic, but skeptical of broad federal responses. All six of the court’s conservatives said Congress had not given the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) power to impose such a sweeping requirement in workplaces across the nation.”

        USA Today (1/13, Fritze) reports this ruling “marked the second time the nation’s highest court unwound a pandemic policy of the Biden administration, again concluding that federal officials exceeded the power given to them by Congress. The court blocked Biden’s eviction moratorium in August, ruling that it also was an overreach.” The majority wrote, “Although Congress has indisputably given OSHA the power to regulate occupational dangers, it has not given that agency the power to regulate public health more broadly. ... Requiring the vaccination of 84 million Americans, selected simply because they work for employers with more than 100 employees, certainly falls in the latter category.”


CDC Guidelines Allow Some People To Get Fourth COVID-19 Vaccine Dose Next Week.

The New York Times (1/9, Mandavilli) reports CDC recommendations were updated last week to allow “some people with a weakened immune system” to get a “fourth dose of the coronavirus vaccine as early as this coming week.” The agency previously said that “immunocompromised people could receive a booster shot – a fourth dose of vaccine, six months after their third dose.” However, a surge in Omicron variant infections led the CDC to shorten “that interval to five months for a booster shot for Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna recipients.” When asked about general recommendations for a fourth dose on Friday, CDC Director Walensky “said that focus remained on Americans eligible for their third shots.”


CDC Backs Moderna Booster Five Months After Second Dose.

Axios (1/7, Gonzalez) reported CDC Director Walensky “signed off on a Food and Drug Administration recommendation that those who received the Moderna vaccine get a booster five months after their second shot instead of six.” Axios added “the move comes just days after the FDA and the CDC made a similar recommendation for Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine recipients.”

        The AP (1/7) and Reuters (1/7, Maddipatla) also reported.


Every Vaccinated Participant Who Experienced Serious COVID-19 Outcomes In CDC Study Had At Least One Risk Factor, Agency Says.

The Hill (1/6, Coleman) reports, “Every vaccinated participant who endured serious COVID-19 outcomes as part of a new study of more than 1 million people had at least one risk factor that left them vulnerable, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).” CDC research published Thursday found only “189 people experienced these outcomes out of more than 1.2 million who got their primary vaccination series between December 2020 and October 2021.” The research indicates “people vaccinated with the primary series who are older, immunocompromised or have certain underlying conditions are more likely to develop breakthrough cases, supporting increased precautions and boosters among more vulnerable populations.”


CDC Recommends Children 12 To 17 Years Old Should Get Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine Booster.

The Washington Post (1/5, A1, Sun, Shepherd) reports on its front page that the CDC “recommended Wednesday that children 12- to 17-years-old should get a Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine booster, expanding protection to adolescents and teens as surging omicron infections threaten to disrupt schools and workplaces across the country.” CDC Director Dr. “Rochelle Walensky endorsed a recommendation that came several hours earlier from the agency’s vaccine advisory panel that endorsed the boosters for 10 million young people.” Walensky said, “It is critical that we protect our children and teens from COVID-19 infection and the complications of severe disease. ... I encourage all parents to keep their children up to date with CDC’s COVID-19 vaccine recommendations.”

Last modified on 01/14/2022

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