COVID-19 boosters are currently authorized for everyone age 16 and over. This recommendation comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Food and Drug Administration and Oregon Health Authority.
The immune response from the primary vaccine series – which is two shots with Pfizer or Moderna, and one shot with Johnson & Johnson – can wane over time, so a booster is needed. When the booster dose is given a person’s immunity against the coronavirus tends to increase, resulting in better protection against the virus and immunity longer. This is because the booster builds on the body’s initial response (antibodies) to fight the coronavirus.
“Booster doses are essential to increase protection against the omicron variant, which is spreading in unprecedented numbers throughout Oregon,” said Adam Brady, MD of Samaritan Infectious Disease.
State and federal public health agencies recommendation for when people ages 18 and over may get a booster of Moderna is five months after the primary series. The Pfizer vaccine booster may be given to people ages 12 and over at five months after the primary series. The Oregon Health Authority also recommends that people 18 and over who received the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine get Pfizer or Moderna as their booster after two months. Boosters have not yet been authorized for children under 12 years old.
Learn more about the booster dose and recommendations on the OHA website. To see the latest information on the COVID-19 vaccine and find out where to get your booster dose, visit samhealth.org/GetTheVaccine.