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Monday, officials at the US Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) issued a statement advising those lucky enough to receive the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine must get both doses for it to be effective.

FDA Commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn and Dr. Peter Marks, FDA's vaccine division head, said, “We have been following the discussions and news reports about reducing the number of doses, extending the length of time between doses, changing the dose (half-dose), or mixing and matching vaccines in order to immunize more people against COVID-19."

The slow vaccination rollout - the US has administered 4.5 million doses as of Monday - has led to speculation that foregoing or delaying a second dose could stretch the amount of available vaccine.

Hahn and Marks said that "at this time, suggesting changes to the FDA-authorized dosing or schedules of these vaccines is premature and not rooted solidly in the available evidence. Without appropriate data supporting such changes in vaccine administration, we run a significant risk of placing public health at risk, undermining the historic vaccination efforts to protect the population from COVID-19."

The FDA statement concluded that “Until vaccine manufacturers have data and science supporting a change, we continue to strongly recommend that health care providers follow the FDA-authorized dosing schedule for each COVID-19 vaccine.”

For the entire FDA statement, click here.

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