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CDC Director Rochelle Walensky. Photo: Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images

Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said Friday the U.S. "may need to update" its definition for what it means to have full vaccination against COVID.

The big picture: The CDC and the FDA have officially approved boosters with every authorized vaccine in the U.S. for people who meet specific requirements. Walensky explained that since not everyone is eligible for a booster, the definition has not been changed "yet."

  • Currently, the CDC's definition is the following: "Fully vaccinated persons are those who are ≥14 days post-completion of the primary series of an FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccine."

What they're saying: "We have not yet changed the definition of 'fully vaccinated.' We will continue to look at this. We may need to update our definition of 'fully vaccinated' in the future," Walensky said during a press briefing.

  • She also encouraged those eligible to get boosters: "If you're eligible for a booster, go ahead and get your booster," she said.

Go deeper

Minnesota leads most of nation in booster shots

Expand chart
Data: CDC; Chart: Jared Whalen/Axios

Minnesota is beating most of the nation when it comes to booster shots, but there's work to be done.

Why it matters: COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations remain high and Omicron is here.

  • While many questions about the new variant remain unanswered, experts say vaccines, including booster shots six months out, are still our best bet at preventing severe illness and death.
Updated Dec 6, 2021 - Health

NYC to impose vaccine mandate on private employers

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) on Monday announced a new COVID vaccine mandate for all private companies.

Why it matters: De Blasio, speaking on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," said the "first-in-the-nation measure" will go into effect starting Dec. 27. It will apply to approximately 184,000 businesses.

Dec 6, 2021 - Health

Cruise ship COVID outbreak: Louisiana officials find "probable" Omicron case

The Norwegian Breakaway cruise ship. Photo: Gerard Bottino/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Louisiana health authorities said a suspected Omicron case was one of 17 confirmed COVID-19 infections among the passengers and crew of a Norwegian Cruise Lines ship that returned to New Orleans Sunday.

Driving the news: The Norwegian Breakaway departed New Orleans on Nov. 28 with more than 3,200 people on board, before making stops in Belize, Honduras and Mexico, according to a Louisiana Department of Health statement.