The Connecticut Department of Public Health is once again urging residents to get the latest COVID-19 booster shots following the approval of an updated formula. These new boosters from both Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech are designed specifically to target the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron variants.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gave their final approval for these new shots on Thursday and the director of the organization recommended them for a majority of Americans.
“Here in Connecticut, we are in a better place than we were a year ago thanks to the COVID-19 vaccines and boosters which have saved countless lives,” said Public Health Commissioner Dr. Manisha Juthani in a statement on Friday. “But with the start of the new school year and the onset of the fall season when people begin spending more time indoors, there is no better time to receive this extra level of protection which targets these variants and prevents transmission of this virus.”
There are some rules, though, when it comes to deciding whether you are eligible for the new vaccines. First, you must have already completed the original series of vaccine. This would be the two-dose versions of either the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines. Once you’ve finished that initial course (or if you got it back when they were first available last year) then you have to wait at least two months from your last shot before you can get the new one.
On top of that, the vaccines have an age requirement. The Moderna booster is available to those 18 and older, while Pfizer-BioNTech’s new dose can be given to patients as young as 12.
Connecticut residents who wish to get the updated booster can contact their primary care physician or visit vaccine.gov to find a provider. They will also be available through local health departments and DPH’s Yellow Van mobile clinics.