US to recommend boosters 8 months after 2nd shot: 4 things to know

The U.S. will recommend most Americans get a COVID-19 booster dose eight months after receiving their second shot, sources familiar with the planning process told The New York Times Aug. 16.

Four things to know about the plan:

  1. White House officials told The New York Times the U.S. is planning to announce its booster plan as early as this week. They also said booster doses could be offered as soon as mid-September.

  2. The announcement will let Americans who received Pfizer's or Moderna's vaccine know they will need additional protection against coronavirus variants. The sources told The New York Times Americans who received Johnson & Johnson's one-dose vaccine will also likely need an additional dose, but the U.S. is waiting for the drugmaker to produce results for its clinical trial testing a two-dose regimen.

  3. The plan is contingent upon FDA approval for COVID-19 boosters, which hasn't been granted yet. The agency amended the emergency use authorizations for Pfizer's and Moderna's COVID-19 vaccines Aug. 12, allowing for a third dose in immunocompromised people, but not yet for the rest of the population.

  4. The booster plan for the rest of the population will likely follow a priority framework similar to the one employed during the country's initial vaccine rollout. Nursing home residents and healthcare workers will likely be the first groups eligible to receive booster shots, followed by Americans age 65 and older.

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