Pfizer is working toward a vaccine that protects people against all variants of the virus that causes COVID-19, but meanwhile, the pharmaceutical giant is planning to submit data to the Food and Drug Administration for a fourth dose of its current vaccine, according to CEO Albert Bourla.

“It’s clear that there is a need in an environment of omicron to boost the immune response,” Bourla told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” Friday, adding that his company will submit a “significant progress of data” to the FDA concerning the fourth dose. 

Meanwhile, trials are taking place for a vaccine underway “that covers omicron and all the other variants,” said Bourla. 

COVID cases and deaths are on the decline since they peaked this January from the highly contagious omicron variant, and states have been lifting their mask mandates, but Bourla insisted that the biggest question remains on how to stay ahead of the virus. 

That includes creating effective vaccines to continue fighting the disease, said Bourla, noting that his company is also working on a vaccine that will not only lower the numbers of hospitalizations and serious cases but will prevent infections from happening.

Making long-lasting vaccines is also a priority, said Bourla, because “we can’t have vaccines every five, six months.”

His comments came two years to the day that the World Health Organization declared COVID a pandemic back on March 11, 2020. 

After vaccines were cleared for use, about 81.4% of Americans ages five years or older have gotten at least one dose of the vaccines produced by Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data. https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#vaccine-delivery-coverage 

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