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US CDC to decide on Omicron-retooled boosters on Sept 1

In this April 23, 2020 file photo, a sign is seen by the entrance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. (TAMI CHAPPELL / AFP)

MEXICO CITY/ Advisers to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will meet on Thursday to vote on whether to recommend the use of two COVID-19 vaccine boosters tailored against the Omicron variant.

A recommendation in favor of the modified vaccines by Pfizer Inc and its German partner BioNTech SE, as well as Moderna Inc is expected to pave the way for a rollout next week.

The US Food and Drug Administration is yet to authorize the two modified boosters, for which applications were submitted last week. 

The so-called bivalent vaccines include both the currently dominant BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron subvariants and the original version of the virus.

While Pfizer's vaccine would be for people aged 12 and older, Moderna's would be for those 18 and older.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices will also meet on Friday but the CDC did not explain in detail the agenda for the day.

This April 17, 2019 photo shows the headquarters of Goldman Sachs in New York City. (JOHANNES EISELE / AFP)

Goldman Sachs

Goldman Sachs Group Inc will lift pandemic-era protocols at its offices effective Sept 6, according to an internal memo reviewed by Reuters.

The Wall Street investment bank had already called its employees back to the office full time in June last year, although it relaxed those requirements during periods when coronavirus cases surged, sources familiar with the matter said.

The new guidelines will allow employees to enter the company's Americas offices regardless of vaccination status, except in New York City and Lima.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador gets a shot of the AstraZeneca vaccine for COVID-19 at the presidential palace in Mexico City, April 20, 2021. (FERNANDO LLANO / AP)

Mexico

The United Nations-backed COVAX vaccine program will send 10 million doses of Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 shots for children to Mexico by the end of September, a senior Mexican official announced Tuesday.

The confirmed dates for the shots' delivery comes a week after President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said he would complain to the United Nations about the delayed shipment of vaccines the government had requested. 

Of the 10 million doses en route, 8.86 million will be used to complete the two-dose regime for children who have already received one dose, and another 1.14 million doses will provide a complete regimen for 571,200 children, Mexico's coronavirus czar Hugo Lopez-Gatell said at a regular news conference.