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Updated COVID-19 booster shots are on their way!

Sep 2, 2022 | COVID-19 vaccine, Latest News, Public Health

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Moderna 18+ and Pfizer 12+ bivalent boosters have been approved by FDA, recommended by CDC and ACIP. Bivalent boosters will be available to Benton and Franklin communities in the next couple weeks.

The FDA authorized new and improved booster shots from Moderna and Pfizer for emergency use. CDC recommended the boosters as well. Further review by Western States Scientific Review Group and Washington State Department of Health should be complete early next week. Doses should be available locally in the next few weeks.

What’s different about the updated boosters?
COVID-19 vaccines already provided strong protection against hospitalization and death. This “bivalent” vaccine offers more protection because it targets both the original COVID-19 strain AND the currently circulating BA.4 and BA.5 omicron variants. These vaccines are more like the annual flu vaccines that target different flu strains.

Who should get these booster doses?
The FDA authorized the:

  • Moderna bivalent booster for everyone 18 and older at least 2 months after primary vaccination or most recent booster.
  • Pfizer bivalent booster for everyone 12 and older at least 2 months after primary vaccination or most recent booster.

When can I get one? The Western States Scientific Review Group and Washington State Department of Health will need to approve the new boosters before we will be able to give them locally. That could happen as soon as this weekend but we don’t know for sure. Check our social media or website for updates.

Will there be enough for everyone?
Eventually, yes. We’ll work quickly to get vaccine to providers as soon as possible.

I haven’t been vaccinated yet. Will I get this vaccine for my initial doses?
No. These doses are not for primary-series vaccination. They are boosters for people who got their primary-series vaccinations or latest booster dose at least 2 months ago.
And if you haven’t been vaccinated yet, you should.

What about booster shots for kids under 12?
Everyone 5-11 years old can still receive the current Pfizer and Moderna boosters 5 months after their primary series of vaccine.

Where can I get the new bivalent booster vaccine when it’s available?
Watch our vaccine page for updates and locations of free vaccine clinics. We’ll be sure to mention on the calendar and our social media when they become available.

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