WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — On Monday, the FDA gave its full stamp of approval to the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
“If you’re one of the millions of Americans who said that they will not get the shot until it has full and final approval of the FDA, it has now happened,” President Joe Biden said.
Biden says news should help fight back against the nationwide increase in cases.
“Across the country, virtually all the COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths continue to be among the unvaccinated,” Biden said.
And with approval in place, the Pentagon says a vaccine mandate for military personnel is on the way.
“The health of the force is, as always, our military and our civilian employees, families and communities, is a top priority,” Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said.
The vaccine is still only approved for those 12 and up, but lawmakers say the approval could pave the way for mandates that protect unvaccinated children.
“The teachers should be vaccinated and the students should be wearing masks in classrooms all across Massachusetts and all across our country,” Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) said.
Markey and Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) say there is no reason for people to doubt the vaccine now.
“If there were some lingering doubts that someone had because of this question, they should now be resolved,” Casey said.
And Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) agrees.
“A year ago, we didn’t have a vaccine. Now we do and we know it works and we need to get shots in arms,” McConnell said.