Booster shots available at all Reid COVID-19 vaccination sites

Staff report

RICHMOND, Ind. — Reid Health announced Tuesday that those newly eligible for a booster dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine may sign up now for an appointment to get the extra shot at all Reid Health’s vaccination locations.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently approved booster shots for some groups of people who received the Pfizer vaccine at least six months ago.

Those eligible for a booster dose include:

-Anyone 65 years and older;

-Those 18 years and older who have underlying medical conditions such as cancer; chronic kidney, liver, lung, or heart conditions; diabetes; pregnancy; obesity; HIV; and more;

-Those 18 and older who work in high-risk settings such as first responders (healthcare workers, firefighters, police), long-term care, education, food and agriculture, manufacturing, prisons and jails, public transit, U.S. Postal Service, and grocery stores;

-Those 18 and older who live in high-risk settings.

According to Reid’s press release, studies have suggested protection against infection and mild illness given by the COVID-19 vaccine may decrease over time, although the vaccines continue to perform very well in preventing severe illness and death. Data has shown the Pfizer booster shot increases a person’s immune response, helping their bodies to better prevent infection.

For now, only the Pfizer vaccine has been approved for a booster dose and only for the specific groups listed above. The CDC says others who received the Pfizer vaccine and those who received the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines will likely need a booster as well, but more data is needed first.

Before last week’s booster shot news, those who are moderately to severely immunocompromised already had been given approval for an extra dose of the two-shot Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. That third dose should come at least 28 days after the second.

The CDC recommends people talk with their healthcare provider about their particular medical condition and whether an additional vaccine dose is appropriate for them.

Free vaccinations are available at a number of nearby locations. Indiana residents can find sites and sign up for an appointment by going to ourshot.in.gov. Ohio residents should use gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov.