Second COVID booster shot: Need one? When should you get it?
Second COVID booster shot: Need one?  When should you get it?

Second COVID booster shot: Need one? When should you get it?

If you are in doubt as to whether you need another COVID-19 vaccine booster or even which one you should get, you seem to be in very good company. Even more confusing is when to roll up your sleeves.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended a booster for all 18 years and older. Another booster has only been recommended for those 50 years and older or for those who are at least 12 years old and immunocompromised.

Those eligible for another booster are told to wait at least four months after their first booster before they can get a Pfizer-BioNTech shot or a Moderna shot. Eligible teens are only eligible for the Pfizer-BioNTech version, according to CDC Guide.

For individuals whose first vaccine was Johnson & Johnsons, either Moderna or Pfizer is recommended in most cases for a first booster in adults, while these are the only brands that are acceptable for the second booster.

With the advent of new varieties, It reported Time’s Alice Park that “however, experts are not comfortable with a strategy of simply adding booster after booster of the same vaccine. So they have launched studies to see if there is a better way to optimize the vaccines and if the current versions of the shots are the best to rely on in the face of an ever-mutating virus. ”

The questions are still answered, but a group of advisers to the Food and Drug Administration looked at recent surveys to try to answer the question. Research from Israel found that due to the emergence of variants, there is some increase in disease among people who got a booster but they do not get as sick as those who did not get the first booster.

The panel noted that the immunity from the vaccines decreases, as much as a 25-fold decrease against Omicron for those who were fully vaccinated but not boosted, and about 6 times for those who were boosted.

Because of the potential for side effects, and because much is still not known, the group said they do not have enough evidence to recommend everyone to get a new booster.

After the meeting It reported the magazine Time“Currently, the vaccination plan is a complicated algorithm, depending on what vaccine people get, as well as their age and health status.”

Officials are considering a flu shot model where an annual shot is determined based on a best bet on the strain that is likely to circulate. Time noted that it is not quite as clear with COVID-19 as the variants do not necessarily follow the pattern of change seen with influenza.

“The question of how we decide when the vaccine should be modified and what will be the threshold where we say that so much refugee from vaccine immunity requires a change – it is such a difficult question to answer,” said Dr. Cody Meissner, director of pediatric infectious disease at Tufts Medical Center, who is on the FDA committee, per. Time.

points out Yale Medicine that booster entitlement continues to expand. Dr. Albert Shaw, one of Yale Medicine’s specialists in infectious diseases, said: “The main question is how long the immunological protection against SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, lasts. And as we learn about COVID-19 in real time, it is difficult to know definitively. ”

The recommendation to get a booster does not mean the existing vaccines are a failure, he said. Rather, it is a result of what we continue to learn about how the virus works and what is an effective tool to curb the serious illness it can cause.

It writes the Los Angeles Times that the public health authorities who certainly believe that people with compromised immune systems or over 50 should get the second booster shot to reduce the chance of getting serious illness if one gets COVID-19.

“Evidence around the world shows declining protection against vaccines over time,” LA County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer told the newspaper. “People at higher risk, People who are older, People who have underlying health conditions: Do not delay.”

Last September, the World Health Organization’s science podcast explored the value of boosters. At the time, Dr. Katherine O’Brien, Director of the Group’s Department of Immunization, Vaccines and Biology, The circumstances that require the vaccine to be increased:

  • Some people who are immunocompromised do not respond adequately to the original full vaccination doses.
  • Immunity may decline over time.
  • The original vaccine does not work so well against new variants.

All three of these factors appear to be at play at this stage of the pandemic. And the only sure thing is that the advice on boosters is evolving, experts say.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.