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Just five days after the CDC recommended a pause in the use of Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 shot, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Sunday that he expects officials to make a decision regarding the troubled vaccine by the end of this week.
“A decision almost certainly will be made by Friday,” Fauci told CBS’ Face the Nation. “I don’t really anticipate that they’re going to want to stretch it out a bit longer, in one way or the other, make a decision about J&J. I don’t know what that’s going to be, but I believe by Friday we’re going to know the answer to that.”
In another interview Sunday, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases told NBC’s Meet the Press that he believes the J&J vaccine will continue to be used “in some form,” while admitting that it could come with new restrictions.
“My estimate is that we will continue to use it in some form. I doubt very seriously if they just cancel it,” Fauci said. “I do think that there will likely be some sort of warning or restriction or risk assessment. I don’t think it’s just going to go back and say, ‘Okay, everything’s fine. Go right back.’ I think it’ll likely say, ‘Okay, we’re going to use it, but be careful under these circumstances.’”
Later in the interview, Fauci said that a COVID-19 booster shot could be necessary for the future. “We’ll know sometime, I believe, by the end of the summer, by the beginning of the fall, likely by the end of the summer. Whether or not we’re going to have to boost people with an additional shot, be it an additional shot against the original virus or perhaps- perhaps an- a vaccination against something that’s very specific to whatever variant you’re worried about.”