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COVID-19 booster shots coming for most people in the weeks ahead

Posted at 5:31 PM, Aug 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-17 18:30:43-04

(WXYZ) — The White House COVID-19 Response Team has scheduled a news conference for 11 am Wednesday to discuss plans to roll out booster shots for people who have gotten the two-shot Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.

The recommendation will be to get a booster after 8 months. This is for everyone, not just people with compromised immune systems.

Boosters are being recommended after studies in Israel, one of the first nations to get vaccinated, show the vaccine effectiveness to build antibodies wears off after several months.

The Delta variant, stronger and easier spread, is the other reason why boosters are being recommended now.

Dr. Teena Chopra, the Director of Infection Prevention and Epidemiology at the Detroit Medical Center tells 7 Action News, “The boosted population was two times at a lower risk of developing a COVID infection as compared to those who have received two doses. So, they have some good data has been shared through the Israel government.”

The boosters still need FDA approval. That’s expected by the middle to late September.

The boosters will be first on a priority basis for health care workers, first responders, and people in nursing homes before being given to the general population.

Studies are still being done on the Johnson and Johnson one-shot vaccine and whether a booster is needed for it.

Medical experts say this is no different than getting boosters each flu season.

Dr. Chopra says, “We get boosters for influenza every year, don’t we? Why do we get that? It’s just because the influenza virus also undergoes mutations and we try to play catch with it and get the best match with the vaccine every year.”

This can add to confusion and distrust for people as many have decided not to get the vaccine.

The White House knows they need to sell this and roll it out smoothly. ess Secretary Jen Psaki said today, “We understand it’s going to take a significant operational focus, educational focus, and PR focus to get the information out once it’s finalized.”