‘Fully Vaccinated’ Without A Booster? CDC Says Yes, Isn’t Updating Definition
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is sticking with its current classifications: If you've completed your primary series of covid vaccinations, you're considered "fully vaccinated." If you've had a booster shot, you're "up to date."
White House: No Plans To Change Definition Of 'Fully Vaccinated'
The Biden administration said Wednesday it has no plans to change the definition of "fully vaccinated" against the coronavirus to include getting a booster shot. "Individuals are considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 if they've received their primary series, that definition is not changing," Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky said at a press briefing. (Sullivan, 1/5)
CDC Says COVID Boosters Mean People Are 'Up To Date' With The Vaccines
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have changed their recommendations for vaccinated Americans, urging staying "up to date" on one's COVID-19 shots means getting a booster shot. "CDC surveillance data and other studies from around the world have demonstrated the benefit of a booster dose after receiving only a primary series, including decreased risk of infection, severe disease and death," CDC director Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky said at a White House news briefing on Wednesday. (Thornton and Ortiz, 1/6)
In related news, Walmart reacts to the CDC's new rules on isolation —
Walmart Cuts Paid Covid Leave In Half, As CDC Isolation Guidance Changes
Walmart is cutting pandemic-related paid leave in half — from two weeks to one week — after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cut isolation requirements last week for asymptomatic people with Covid and shortened the time that close contacts need to quarantine. The big-box retailer, which is the country’s largest private employer, announced the policy change in a memo that was sent to employees Tuesday and was obtained by CNBC on Wednesday. (Repko, 1/5)
And the federal government is still having trouble with its messaging —
The New York Times:
For C.D.C.’s Walensky, A Steep Learning Curve On Messaging
Two days before Christmas, with the Omicron variant driving a near-vertical rise in new coronavirus cases, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention alerted the White House that she planned to recommend that people infected with the virus isolate for five days instead of 10.The director, Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky, had faced previous criticism for issuing recommendations that confused the public and in some cases caught the White House off guard. Determined to avoid that this time, she briefed other top Biden health officials on her proposal so they would all be on the same page, according to two people familiar with her actions. It did not work out that way. (LaFraniere, Stolberg and Weiland, 1/5)
New York Post:
Joe Biden Says It's '2020' In Post-New Year's Gaffe
President Biden reassured Americans Tuesday that there was reason to be optimistic about “2020” — mistakenly saying the wrong year four days into 2022. Biden’s post-New Year’s gaffe came as the president urged people to keep wearing masks and get vaccinated for COVID-19 as the Omicron variant causes record-high numbers of infections. “There’s a lot of reason to be hopeful in 2020. But for God’s sake, please take advantage of what is available,” the president said. (Nelson, 1/4)