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Should you get the COVID-19 booster shot? | San Pablo Commercial

You’ve gone through your initial vaccination process and may be wondering if the COVID-19 vaccine booster shot is right for you. As surges of new variants arise with new recommendations, it is important to read more about the booster shot and how it can help improve your immune system against the virus. Here’s what you should know and expect. 

How do COVID-19 booster shots work? 

A booster shot “boosts” your immune system’s response with an additional dose of a vaccine. This extra dose helps your immune system remember how to fight a disease if you get exposed. COVID-19 booster shots work in the same way. 

Boosters are given to people whose immune response has weakened over time since their last shot. It helps the body remember what virus it needs to fight against. A good example of this is a tetanus shot, which most people get boosters for over their lifetime.

Recommendations for COVID vaccine boosters

In the United States, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends a booster shot for all adults 18 or older who have received a COVID vaccine.

  • If you had the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine, the FDA and CDC have authorized Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna boosters for all adults 18 or older at least 5 months after the initial series.
    • Note; CDC states that teens between the ages of 12-17 years old may only get a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine booster
  • If you had the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, a booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine has also been authorized for all adults 18 or older two or more months after the first dose.

Additional shots for people with weak immune systems

Certain medical conditions or taking medications to suppress the immune system can result in having a weakened immune system, also known as immunocompromised. If you have a weakened immune system, you’re especially vulnerable to COVID-19 and its risks. For example, this group of people is more likely to have a serious illness that lasts a long time.

The CDC recommends that people who have weakened immune systems get an additional mRNA COVID-19 vaccine shot at least 28 days (four weeks) after completing their initial series. This applies to people with moderately to severely compromised immune systems due to a medical condition or taking medications to suppress the immune system. This includes people who have:

  • Been receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
  • Received an organ transplant and are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
  • Received CAR-T-cell or hematopoietic stem cell transplant within the last two years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
  • Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (some examples include DiGeorge syndrome and Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
  • Advanced or untreated HIV infection
  • Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress your immune system 

Mixing or matching booster shots

The FDA and the CDC have concluded that mixing or matching vaccines when getting a booster dose is safe and effective. Regardless of the initial vaccine you received, any of the three available vaccines may be given as a booster.

Scheduling Your Booster Shot Appointment

If you need help scheduling your booster shot, contact the location that set up your previous appointment. If you need to get your booster shot in a location different from where you received your previous shot, there are several ways you can find a vaccine provider:

  • Search Vaccines.gov
  • Text your ZIP code to 438829
  • Call 1-800-232-0233

What to expect during and after your booster shot appointment?

Remember to bring your CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card to your booster appointment so your provider can fill in the information about your booster dose. 

You may experience side effects after getting a COVID-10 vaccine. These may be typical to what you might have experienced after the first two shots. Plan ahead and give yourself time to rest. We can also expect the FDA and CDC to continue to expand recommendations for boosters based on review and analysis of ongoing research.

At San Pablo Commercial, we care about our customers and their loved ones. That’s why we are here to provide helpful information to keep our community safe. 

San Pablo Commercial is a family-owned, small business with a mission to deliver affordable medical supplies to their customers. We offer a variety of incontinence products including SPC underpads, bed mats for children, tuckable bed protectors for potty training, and disposable bed pads for incontinence. We ship directly to our customer’s home within 2 to 3 business days. We care deeply about our customers and want to make ordering incontinence supplies easier so that they can spend less time cleaning up spills and messes.

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