Everything you need to know about getting a COVID-19 booster shot

Coronavirus vaccination
Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash

The Gist: The CDC has formally made its recommendations on the booster shots of the COVID-19 vaccines. In Georgia, the state department of public health is following that guidance.

First thing’s first: The guidance only applies to the Pfizer vaccine. If you got the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the FDA has not issued any recommendations yet for boosters of those vaccines.

What is a booster?: In the case of coronavirus vaccine, the booster shot would be a third dose that would come several months after you have completed the initial two-dose vaccination.

Who should get a booster shot?: According to the CDC guidance, the following groups should receive the booster.

  • People 65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series   
  • People aged 50–64 years with underlying medical conditions should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series
  • People aged 18–49 years with underlying medical conditions may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks
  • People aged 18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks.

When will it be available?: The Georgia Department of Public Health will begin giving booster doses at health department vaccination locations on Monday, Sept. 27.

HOW TO GET VACCINATED: COVID-19 has killed more than 20,000 Georgia residents. Don’t let yourself or your loved ones die from a preventable virus. COVID vaccines are free and widely available statewide without insurance or identification. To find a vaccination location or to schedule an appointment, visit https://dph.georgia.gov/covid-vaccine.

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