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FDA Committee Recommends Boosters For Johnson & Johnson, Final Authorization Could Come Next Week

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- A month after an FDA panel approved a booster for the Pfizer vaccine, that panel late this week unanimously recommended the same for other vaccines--Thursday for Moderna and Friday the Johnson & Johnson single-shot.

If given final authorization, those boosters could be available late next week.

An FDA committee will decide later this month whether to authorize Pfizer's COVID vaccine for kids 5 to 11.

The president says there are enough doses already purchased for that age group.

"Assuming both of those events go well and you get a positive recommendation out of the FDA and CDC, this should be available almost immediately," said former FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb.

Gov. Larry Hogan said Friday local health departments are ready to administer to the younger age group once approved.

"We've been working for three or four months to prepare," he said. "The state health department has been working with the state board of ed."

Entering Friday, more than 700 Marylanders were hospitalized from COVID-19, including seven children.

Maryland is pushing 200,000 boosters administered and is on pace to pass that number Friday.

Topline metrics continue to drop, including the state's positivity and case rates.

But Western Maryland counties, with low vaccination numbers, have the state's highest case rates.

The CDC says the covid-19 vaccines remain safe and effective.

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