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Photo: Jay L. Clendenin/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

COVID-19 vaccine booster doses are not necessary right now based on the current evidence, international public health experts — including two FDA vaccine leaders who are leaving the agency this year — wrote a new paper in The Lancet.

Why it matters: The paper is a rebuke of the Biden administration's push to open up booster shots for everyone.

What they're saying: "Even if boosting were eventually shown to decrease the medium-term risk of serious disease, current vaccine supplies could save more lives if used in previously unvaccinated populations than if used as boosters in vaccinated populations," the scientists wrote.

  • They did say booster doses could be appropriate for immunocompromised people, and indeed that population can get a third dose of an mRNA vaccine.

The bottom line: Medical ethicists and scientists have not supported widespread booster shots, as the vaccines are still extremely effective in preventing severe COVID-19 and death, and considering a majority of the world still hasn't gotten one shot.

Go deeper

Biden: It's "your patriotic duty" to get vaccinated

President Biden told unvaccinated Americans Tuesday that getting the COVID vaccine is "your patriotic duty" and "an obligation to your country."

Why it matters: Biden's remarks come amid a surge in new cases largely driven by the Omicron variant, which is now the dominant strain of the coronavirus in the U.S.

Dec 22, 2021 - Health

California to require health care workers get booster shots

California Gov. Gavin Newsom during a November press conference. Photo: Sarah Reingewirtz/MediaNews Group/Los Angeles Daily News via Getty Images

California will require health care workers to get COVID-19 booster shots, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Tuesday.

Driving the news: He's taking the step to "protect Californians during a potential winter surge," per a statement from Newsom's office. "With Omicron on the rise, we're taking immediate actions to protect Californians and ensure our hospitals are prepared," Newsom tweeted.

Updated 10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Concerns grow over CDC's isolation guidelines — Experts warn of more COVID-19 variants after Omicron — WHO recommends 2 new treatments — What "mild" really means when it comes to Omicron — Deaths are climbing as cases skyrocket.
  2. Vaccines: America's vaccination drive runs out of gas— Puerto Rico expands booster shot requirements— Supreme Court blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for large employers.
  3. Politics: You can start ordering free COVID tests Wednesday — Focus group says Biden weak on COVID response, strong on democracy — Biden deploying military medical staff to help overwhelmed hospitals.
  4. Economy: America's labor shortage is bigger than the pandemic— Nurses across the U.S. strike against COVID working conditions— CDC COVID guidance for cruise ships to be optional starting Saturday — The cost of testing.
  5. States: Biden admin threatens to take back Arizona's COVID aid over anti-mask rules — Students across U.S. walkout of classes to demand safer COVID protocols — West Virginia governor feeling "extremely unwell" after positive test — Youngkin ends mandates for masks in schools and COVID vaccinations for state workers.
  6. World: Beijing reports first local Omicron case weeks before Winter Olympics — Teachers in France stage mass walkout over COVID protocols.
  7. Variant tracker