**FILE** Courtesy of Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services via Twitter
**FILE** Courtesy of Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services via Twitter

Pfizer reportedly will request authorization this week for a coronavirus vaccine booster for teens 16 and 17.

If approved, the Pfizer-BioNTech shot would be the first vaccine booster for those younger than 18. There is no timeline for when the Food and Drug Administration will act on Pfizer’s request.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky recommended everyone over the age of 18 get a booster six months after their initial two-shot Pfizer or Moderna doses and two months for those who took the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Pfizer’s expected request, first reported by The Washington Post, comes amid a new strain of the virus causing worldwide concern. President Biden on Monday urged Americans to be concerned but not panicked about the omicron variant, which was first found in South Africa and has since been detected in nearly 20 countries.

Though no U.S. cases have yet been reported, Biden and health officials say it’s a matter of when, not if.

As of Tuesday, roughly 21% of all fully vaccinated U.S. residents, or about 40 million people, have gotten a booster shot, according to data from the CDC.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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