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ODH Releases Booster Guidance for Vaccine Providers

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March 31, 2022


COVID-19 Vaccine Program Guidance for Vaccine Providers for Administering Booster Doses

COVID-19 vaccines offer the best protection against serious illness and death from COVID-19. The vaccines are safe and effective at reducing risk for serious illness and death from COVID-19. But that protection weakens over time. Booster doses can help restore and maintain that protection from severe COVID-19 outcomes.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend a single COVID-19 booster dose for people age 12 years and older. The timing of booster doses varies by vaccine product (see product specific guidance below). Booster doses are not authorized for anyone younger than age 12 at this time.

In addition, the FDA and CDC have authorized a second booster dose for those people who are at the highest risk for severe illness or death from COVID-19. This authorization gives people who are at increased risk the choice to add another layer of protection.

People who may choose to receive a second booster dose, based on their individual benefits and risks, include:

  • People age 50 and older who received an initial mRNA booster dose (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) at least four months ago MAY RECEIVE a second booster dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine. A second booster dose may be most beneficial for people who are age 65 and older, or who are age 50-64 with certain underlying medical conditions.
  • People age 12 and older who are moderately to severely immunocompromised who received an initial mRNA booster dose (Pfizer or Moderna) at least four months ago MAY RECEIVE a second booster dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer, age 12+; Moderna, age 18+). This means individuals age 12 years and older who are moderately to severely immunocompromised may receive as many as five doses – the recommended three-dose primary series for people who are immunocompromised, plus two booster doses.
  • In addition, based on a newly published CDC report, adults who received a primary vaccine and booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine at least 4 months ago MAY RECEIVE a second booster dose using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna).

People who are now eligible to receive a second booster dose are encouraged to talk to their healthcare providers to assess individual risks and the benefits of another dose in strengthening ongoing protection.
Eligibility, dosage, and timing of booster shots vary by COVID-19 vaccine product, and other factors including age and medical condition. 

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