By Laurie McGinley, The Washington Post
August 31, 2022 – Reinforcements for the novel coronavirus approached after receiving permission from federal regulators on Wednesday. The updated pickup is designed to provide a stronger shield against the BA.4 and BA.5 omicron sub variants that continue to cause tens of thousands of injuries and hundreds of deaths every day in the United States.
The boosters will be part of the federal government’s campaign, which will be launched within days, to persuade Americans to bolster their immune defenses ahead of a possible surge in COVID-19 cases as cold weather arrives in the fall.
But the updated boosters have caused some controversy and confusion. Here’s what you need to know.
When will the footage be available?
Boosters, after receiving emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration, must have the blessing of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and its advisors. The review is scheduled for Thursday. If all goes as expected, some footage may be available this weekend, with more available just after Labor Day.
Where can I get one and how much will it cost?
The new boosters, intended for single shots, will be available in the same places as previous boosters and vaccines – in doctors’ offices, hospitals, pharmacies and community health clinics.
Like other coronavirus screenshots, the updated boosts have been purchased by the federal government and will be free to consumers.
Who are the reinforcements for?
The CDC is expected to recommend the shots for the same ages as those authorized by the FDA: 12 and older for the new booster from Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech, and 18 and older for the Moderna booster. Officials are expected to consider using the updated booster for younger children later. Anyone who has received the initial series of the mRNA vaccine and the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine will be eligible, regardless of whether they have received any — or all — of the recommended booster shots.
The current vaccine will continue to be used, but only for the initial two mRNA sequences, not as a booster.
If I just got the original booster vaccine, should I get the new vaccine right away?
No, the FDA said that people who have recently received the initial or booster vaccine should wait two months before getting the updated booster. Getting a new booster too soon may reduce its effectiveness.
What are the side effects of boosters?
Side effects are not expected to differ from those associated with the current vaccine, which include redness and swelling at the vaccine site, as well as occasional fatigue, headache, and muscle pain, according to the CDC. More serious reactions rarely occur.
Lena H. Sun of The Washington Post contributed to this report.