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*Please note that information may change quickly. This update was originally posted Sept. 1, 2022
The arrival of the bivalent COVID-19 booster is exciting news. This vaccine will provide better protection against the currently circulating COVID virus Omicron variants and hopefully provide good protection against any variants circulating this fall during flu season, which is likely to bring increased case rates later this year.
The Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine, Bivalent, is authorized for use as a single booster dose in individuals 18 years of age and older if it has been at least two months since they have completed primary vaccination or since they have received their last booster dose with any authorized or approved monovalent COVID-19 vaccine. The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, Bivalent, is authorized for use as a single booster dose in individuals 12 years of age and older if it has been at least two months since they have completed primary vaccination or since they have received their last booster dose with any authorized or approved monovalent COVID-19 vaccine.
We will look to CDC to recommend the use of these bivalent vaccines and whether or not they recommend it for certain groups (such as those older than 50) on a priority basis given initial supply will not be enough for all those eligible under the FDA authorization. Once we have a recommendation and providers have the vaccines in hand, they will be available to community members. Hopefully this will be in the next couple of weeks, but that remains to be seen.
With the authorization of the new bivalent vaccines, the FDA has eliminated authorization for the monovalent boosters for those 12 and up. So if you are older than 12, you will need to wait until bivalent boosters are available before you can get a COVID booster dose at this time.
There may be some waiting for people to get the boosters depending on vaccine availability as well as their local providers’ staffing and capacity. We urge patience as providers work hard to make sure everyone who is due for a booster can get it, but this will take some time.