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FDA Approval Sparks Vaccine Mandates: Pentagon, NYC Schools Announce Requirements

By News Creatives Authors , in Business , at August 23, 2021


More businesses and government entities are announcing vaccine mandates for employees in the wake of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approving the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine Monday.

Key Facts

The Pentagon will mandate coronavirus vaccination for all 1.4 million service members in the U.S. military, spokesman John Kirby said Monday, adding that official guidance and a timeline will be released in the coming days.

Two weeks ago, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the military would require soldiers to get coronavirus vaccines once they gained full FDA approval or by mid-September, whichever happened first.

New York City Mayor Mayor Bill de Blasio said all of the city’s public school teachers and other Department of Education employees— representing approximately 148,000 people—will be required to get the vaccine by Sept. 27.

United Airlines announced early this month it would mandate that workers be fully vaccinated by October 25 or five weeks after the FDA authorizes a vaccine, whichever was earlier.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown said last week all of the state’s healthcare workers, teachers and school volunteers will be required to be vaccinated by Oct. 18 or six weeks after a coronavirus vaccine receives full FDA approval, whichever would be later.

In June, San Francisco officials announced employees working in high-risk environments like group care homes, homeless shelters and jails must be vaccinated against coronavirus once the FDA authorizes a vaccine.

The FDA approval will usher in a vaccine mandate at Louisiana State University for all roughly 34,000 enrolled students, president William F. Tate IV said Monday, following an announcement of the imminent vaccine requirement earlier this month.


California was the first state to require teachers to get vaccinated against coronavirus, or agree to weekly testing. The policy also applies to other school employees like administrators, instructional aides, teaching assistants, school bus drivers and janitors.

Key Background

On Monday, the FDA announced it authorized the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for people ages 16 and older, making it the first coronavirus to receive the agency’s full approval. Until now, the vaccine had been approved for emergency use authorization, and still remains under that classification for people between the ages of 12 and 15, the FDA said. It’s the fastest vaccine approval in FDA history. Other coronavirus vaccines being administered in the U.S., like Johnson & Johnson and Moderna, are still available under emergency use authorization. Federal regulators are still reviewing Moderna’s application for full FDA approval, while Johnson & Johnson has not applied yet.

Further Reading

FDA Approves Pfizer Coronavirus Vaccine (Forbes)

NYC Mandates Vaccines For All Public School Teachers And Staff (Forbes)

United Airlines Mandates Covid Vaccines For All U.S. Employees (Forbes)


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