All the questions related to whether a booster dose of the Covid 19 vaccine is necessary and if yes, then who should be getting it has now gotten simplified as the CDC as well as the FDA has now approved the administration of booster doses for all the adults who got vaccinated with the initial series of Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine for Coronavirus at least six months ago.
Questions Related To Booster Doses Get Simpler Compared To Before
About the Janssen vaccine by Johnson & Johnson, the CDC and FDA had already authorized the booster shots of everyone who got their J & J vaccine at least two months ago, which makes every fully vaccinated adult in the country eligible for a booster shot.
The CDC committee of vaccine experts has finally expressed their relief over this decision as it will help streamline the process better compared to the previously complicated guidelines.
Eligibility for booster doses
Every adult who is fully vaccinated with the initial two doses of either Moderna’s or Pfizer’s Covid 19 vaccine series at least 6 months ago and every fully vaccinated adult, who received their single-dose series of Johnson & Johnson vaccine, Janssen at least 2 months ago is eligible to get their free booster shot by simply showing their CDC vaccine card.
Which booster vaccine?
The approval to mix and match doses is still applicable. So, everyone who got their initial series of Pfizer vaccines can get a P Pfizer/BioNTech booster shot, the Moderna booster, which is half the size of the initial dose of Moderna vaccine, or the booster shot by Johnson & Johnson.
And for all the adults who got an initial vaccine that is not authorized in America like AstraZeneca, which is authorized in the Caribbean or Europe are eligible to get the Pfizer booster shot.
According to studies, getting either of these three boosters will help pump up people’s immunity back to the levels it was after the initial vaccination series.
How long do the boosters protect?
According to doctors, similar to the initial series, it will take 2 weeks for the booster to take effect and reach peak immunity levels, which is why CDC has been encouraging people to get their additional dose at the earliest before the upcoming holiday season as the officials are concerned about travel during holidays.
Boosters for Children
As the risk of waning immunity is generally higher in senior citizens and those who are at a higher risk of infection because of pre-existing medical conditions, the FDA and CDC have first prioritized that group.
Also, none of the vaccine manufacturing companies have, as yet, reported any proof of waning immunity in fully vaccinated individuals who are 18 or younger.
Will the meaning of “fully vaccinated” change?
Not in America. Every individual who got their initial series of the two-dose Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines with a gap of at least 3 weeks, two doses of Moderna vaccine with a gap of at least 4 weeks, or Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine will still be considered “fully vaccinated.”
Is booster protection lifelong?
It would be too soon to declare anything yet. There is a possibility that, like the MMR vaccines, after the initial doses are done, people will be immune for life.
However, there is also a possibility that immunity might wane after years as it will be too soon to predict if a new variant of the virus is likely to emerge and cause breakthrough infections. If such a scenario occurs, just like with the flu vaccine, the vaccine formulation will need to be altered accordingly.
With over 15 years as a practicing journalist, Nikki Attkisson found herself at Powdersville Post now after working at several other publications. She is an award-winning journalist with an entrepreneurial spirit and worked as a journalist covering technology, innovation, environmental issues, politics, health etc. Nikki Attkisson has also worked on product development, content strategy, and editorial management for numerous media companies. She began her career at local news stations and worked as a reporter in national newspapers.