We have come a long way since the onset of the pandemic and while the vaccines have been successful thus far in reducing the risk of hospitalizations and COVID deaths, the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is recommending that vaccinated individuals receive the COVID-19 booster. Just like any vaccine, it can wane over time which is why the CDC is encouraging the booster shot to maximize protection and prolong its durability.
At this time, Pfizer is the first company to offer the booster shot to individuals who have received two doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months ago. As per the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the following individuals are now eligible for a booster dose of Pfizer:
- People 65 years and older
- Residents of long-term care settings
- People ages 50-64 years old with underlying medical conditions
- People ages 18-49 years old with underlying medical conditions
- People ages 18-64 years old who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of their occupational or institutional setting
Moderna and Johnson & Johnson booster shots are in the making but are not yet available. Therefore, it is important to check your vaccination card to see exactly which vaccine you got to confirm eligibility for the Pfizer booster shot.
Similar to finding where to get a COVID-19 vaccine, the Commonwealth’s VaxFinder tool provides a full list of hundreds of locations across the state where individuals can receive a booster shot. While appointments may not be required for certain vaccination sites, it is always best practice to book an appointment via VaxFinder or with your local pharmacy. For those who are having trouble with getting to a vaccination clinic, the In-Home Vaccination Program is available.
For more frequently asked questions and answers, visit the Commonwealth of MA website.