TUCSON (KVOA) - Pfizer announced on Tuesday that it plans to file for full approval from the Food and Drug Administration by the end of the month.
All three COVID-19 vaccines used in the U.S. have been operating under the FDA's Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) since mid-December.
EUAs expedite the normal approval process, but when the emergency is over, the EUA is no longer in effect, drugmakers must apply for full FDA approval.
Many health experts hope this FDA approval will lend an extra veil of legitimacy to the vaccine, and get more people to roll up their sleeves.
"Our hope, again, is more and more people are willing to get the vaccines. That makes this threat go away. If everybody, theoretically, was vaccinated and the vaccines work as well as they appear to work, then this whole threat goes away," Dr. John McGettigan, with the Quality of Life Medical and Research Center said.
President Joe Biden addressed vaccine hesitancy in a COVID-19 briefing on Tuesday morning.
"Now we're going to have to bring the vaccine to people who are less eager," President Biden said. "So we also know that there are millions of Americans who just need a little bit of encouragement to get the shot."
Pfizer also announced that it plans to file for full FDA approval for its vaccine for those 16 years and older by the end of this month.