By Travis Boyer –
Tuesday afternoon, the city of Worcester announced that the Pfizer COVID-19 Booster will be administered by the City of Worcester’s Department of Health of Human Services at its mobile vaccination clinics.
In a statement the city of Worcester says, “The booster, a safe and effective way to reduce the risk of severe illness, hospitalization and death as the result of the COVID-19 virus and the Delta variant, is available every Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Main Branch of the Worcester Public Library, 3 Salem Square.”
The Booster shots are not available to everyone. First, it is administered for Pfizer only and that means, only those people who have previously received the Pfizer vaccine can get this booster shot.
Second, you can only get the booster if it has been at least 6 months since you received your second dose.
Third, you must meet certain requirements like being 65 years of age and older, 18-64 of age at risk for severe COVID-19 due to underlying medical conditions, and 18-64 of age at increased risk for COVID-19 because of occupational or institutional settings.
The CDC says, “Studies show that after getting vaccinated against COVID-19, protection against the virus may decrease over time and be less able to protect against the Delta variant. Although COVID-19 vaccination for adults aged 65 years and older remains effective in preventing severe disease.”
Also, the CDC says that, “Vaccination is less effective at preventing infection or milder illness with symptoms. Emerging evidence also shows that among healthcare and other frontline workers, vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19 infections is decreasing over time. This lower effectiveness is likely due to the combination of decreasing protection as time passes since getting vaccinated (e.g., waning immunity) as well as the greater infectiousness of the Delta variant.”
As previously mentioned, the Pfizer booster is only available to those who got a Pfizer first and second dose which means that it is not available for people who got the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen.
For people who got the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen, the CDC says, “he Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) and CDC’s recommendations are bound by what the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) authorization external icon allows. At this time, the Pfizer-BioNTech booster authorization only applies to people whose primary series was the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. People in the recommended groups who got the Moderna or J&J/Janssen vaccine may need a booster shot. More data on the effectiveness and safety of Moderna and J&J/Janssen booster shots are expected soon. With those data in hand, CDC will keep the public informed with a timely plan for Moderna and J&J/Janssen booster shots.”
The city of Worcester in a statement says, “In addition to mobile clinics in Worcester, locations for vaccinations and booster shots, including more than 460 retail pharmacies, can be found at vaxfinder.mass.gov.”