Fears over rising illness and death from the delta variant fuel Biden administration push for boosters

In recent months, administration officials have kept a close eye on Israel’s experience with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Recently, the Israeli government released data showing that for people 65 years and older who were inoculated in January, the vaccine was less than 55 percent effective against severe disease and hospitalization. The decline in effectiveness, which has been showing up in Israeli data for several weeks, has prompted that nation to begin administering booster shots to people age 50 and above.

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