By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
The Wyoming Department of Health called federal approval of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine “a step forward” on Monday.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration officially approved the Pfizer vaccine on Monday morning, more than eight months after it was first made available to the public. The vaccine will now be marketed as “Comirnaty.”
“The full FDA approval of the Pfizer vaccine for two doses among people 16 and older is a step forward,” WDH spokeswoman Kim Deti told Cowboy State Daily on Monday. “With increasing cases, hospitalizations and deaths due to the dominant Delta variant we welcome anything that might encourage more Wyoming residents to say yes to vaccination.”
The Pfizer vaccine was also approved for children age 12 to 15 in mid-May. Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approved the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines for a third booster shot, to be administered eight months after the patient is fully vaccinated.
According to the WDH, 193,713 residents have received two doses of either the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine as of Monday.
FDA-approved vaccines undergo the agency’s standard process for reviewing the quality, safety and effectiveness of medical products. For all vaccines, the FDA evaluates data and information included in the manufacturer’s submission of a biologics license application.
Comirnaty contains messenger RNA, a kind of genetic material. The mRNA is used by the body to make a mimic of one of the proteins in the virus that causes COVID-19. The result of a person receiving this vaccine is that their immune system will ultimately react defensively to the virus that causes COVID-19.
The mRNA in Comirnaty is only present in the body for a short time and is not incorporated into, nor does it alter, an individual’s genetic material. Comirnaty is administered as a series of two doses, three weeks apart.