Pfizer Booster Shots Approved for Specific Groups; Definition of Fully Vaccinated Remains Unchanged

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Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially announced their approval of booster doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for certain people. To be eligible for a booster dose, you must have received your second dose of the two-dose Pfizer vaccine series at least 6 months ago and fall into any of the following groups:

  • 65 years or older
  • A resident of long-term care facilities
  • 8 to 64 years with underlying medical conditions
  • 18 to 64 years with high institutional or occupational risk, including healthcare workers, first responders, teachers and daycare staff, grocery workers, and workers in homeless shelters or prisons

Please note that boosters are currently only available to residents who received Pfizer. Those who received Moderna or Johnson & Johnson will need to wait until the FDA reviews the data and need boosters for these vaccines. To make an appointment for a booster shot, you can go to https://myturn.ca.gov/, or make an appointment at any pharmacy or clinic that offers Pfizer vaccines. Residents who received their COVID-19 vaccination within the State of California may request a digital copy of their COVID-19 vaccine record by visiting https://myvaccinerecord.cdph.ca.gov/.

As you are probably aware, vaccine verification requirements are becoming more common, and in LA County, people will need to show proof of being fully vaccinated to enter the indoor portions of bars, nightclubs, lounges, breweries, and wineries. Despite the approval of booster doses, the CDC has not changed the definition of “fully vaccinated” to include a booster dose. Everyone is still considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose in a 2-shot series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or two weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. You can read more FAQs about the booster dose from the CDC here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/booster-shot.html

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