FACT CHECK: Did Pfizer Scientists Warn Weekly COVID-19 Vaccinations May Be Needed To Prevent Lockdowns?

Mecca Fowler | Contributor

An image shared on Facebook claims Pfizer scientists have warned that weekly COVID-19 vaccinations may be needed for the omicron variant to prevent lockdowns.

Verdict: False

There is no evidence Pfizer has said such a thing about “weekly vaccinations” against COVID-19. The claim stems from a satire website.

Fact Check:

Amid the omicron variant of the coronavirus spreading rapidly across the globe, multiple Facebook users have shared what looks like a news headline saying, “Pfizer Scientists Warn Weekly Vaccinations May Be Needed For Omicron Variant COVID-19 To Prevent Lockdown.” Pfizer is a pharmaceutical company that jointly developed a COVID-19 vaccine that was approved in August for people ages 16 and up by the Food and Drug Administration.

A keyword search revealed the screen grab actually shows a Dec. 1 article published by The Stonk Market. At the bottom of The Stonk Market’s website, it says: “TheStonkMarket.com is a financial satire site.”

Furthermore, Pfizer has not put out any press releases stating that “weekly vaccination” against COVID-19 “may be needed.” On Dec. 8, the company announced a preliminary laboratory study showed “serum antibodies induced by the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine (BNT162b2) neutralize the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant after three doses.”

Pfizer’s CEO, Albert Bourla, did say on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” in December that a fourth COVID-19 vaccine dose may be needed sooner than expected. (RELATED: Has Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla Been Arrested By The FBI On Fraud Charges?)

“And the second point, I think we will need the fourth dose. I’ve said that multiple times,” he said, according to a transcript. “With the previous, I was projecting that that will be on 12 months after the third dose. With Omicron, we need to wait and see because we have very little information. We may need it faster.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website states that adults ages 18 and older are eligible to receive a booster six months after completing their primary COVID-19 vaccination series of Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna, or two months after their single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 16- and 17-year-olds are also eligible to get a booster if they received Pfizer-BioNTech as their primary vaccination series six months ago, according to the CDC website.

Over 203.5 million people in the U.S. have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as of Friday, according to data on the CDC website.

Mecca Fowler