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Barton Health

Food and Drug Administration Authorizes Booster Dose of Pfizer COVID-19 for Certain Populations

(South Lake Tahoe, CA) – On September 22, 2021, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) amended the emergency use authorization for the Pfizer-BioNTech’s two-dose COVID-19 to allow for use of a single booster dose, to be administered no sooner than six months following the initial two-dose series. This was then confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on September 24, 2021.

The following populations qualify for a booster dose:

  • Age 65+
  • Age 18-64 with high risk of severe COVID-19, including those who have the following diagnosis or condition: cancer, chronic kidney disease, chronic lung disease, dementia or other neurological conditions, diabetes, down syndrome, heart conditions, HIV infection, immunocompromised state, liver disease, overweight, pregnant, sickle-cell or thalassemia, current or former smoker, solid organ transplant or stem cell transplant, stroke or substance use disorder.
  • Individuals 18 through 64 years of age whose frequent institutional or occupational exposure to SARS-CoV-2 puts them at high risk of serious complications of COVID-19 including severe COVID-19.

“A booster dose serves as a reminder to our immune systems, in this case presenting once again what the spike proteins on a COVID virus look like, which will expedite a vaccinated person’s immune response and prolong their protective immunity,” says Dr. Rhonda Sneeringer, Medical Director for COVID-19 at Barton Health.

Qualifying individuals, who received the Pfizer vaccine at least six months ago, can call their provider or select pharmacies to schedule their booster or ask if they qualify. Note, it is currently required individuals receive boosters from the same vaccine manufacturer as their initial doses. At this time, only the Pfizer vaccine has received authorization to distribute its booster.

The COVID-19 vaccines are proven to be safe and effective. Vaccination reduces the risk of COVID-19, including severe illness, among people who are fully vaccinated by 90% or more. The vaccination is 88-95% effective against hospitalization and severe illness from the Delta variant.

For information on where to find a Pfizer vaccine near you, visit Vaccines.gov. Vaccines are also available at Barton Family Medicine and Barton Community Health Center for established patients who meet criteria.