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Is it time to get your COVID-19 booster shot?

SGMC doctor explains process
Published: Sep. 30, 2021 at 5:53 PM EDT
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VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - Have you been wondering whether or not it’s time to get your COVID-19 vaccine booster shot?

On Thursday, WALB News 10 learned more about who is eligible and where do plans stand for Moderna and the one-shot Janssen.

The rollout for Pfizer booster shots has started.

So far, this is the only vaccine authorized as a booster and only for those who got the two prior shots.

Those eligible should be at least six months out from the second dose.

People 65 and older, residents in long-term care facilities, those with underlying medical conditions — like diabetes, cancer, heart conditions and asthma — and those between 18-64 that work in a high-risk exposure and transmission job qualify for the booster.

Dr. Brian Dawson, South Georgia Medical Center chief medical officer, explained some of the careers where this extra shot would be beneficial.

“If they’re in any kind of high-risk occupation where there is a high risk of exposure or transmission. I would reference there’s lot of different fields other than health care, but certainly in health care. Also, our colleagues that work in education, teachers around lots of children,” said Dawson.

If you feel some mild side effects after that booster shot, Dawson said not be alarmed, it’s normal.

“Some of the people we have administered to, they do report that they feel like their shoulder is a little more sore than the first one and had a little more body aches, but it seems like this is pretty easy remedied by taking a dose of Ibuprofen or Tylenol to help with their symptoms,” said Dawson.

For any additional symptoms, you are advised to contact your health provider.

The FDA is reviewing Moderna’s data for booster approvals.

And for those who received the one-shot Janssen, the FDA and CDC are analyzing data, as well and working to provide more.

Currently, the CDC only recommends people with moderately to severely compromised immune systems get an additional dose of Moderna if that’s what they initially got.

Johnson & Johnson recently announced new data explaining the strong and long-lasting protection of the Janssen vaccine.

They claim the data showed a booster of Janssen at two months gave 94% protection against COVID-19.

The CDC said there isn’t enough data to support the use of the Pfizer vaccine as a booster dose for those who got Moderna or Janssen.

SGMC is administering Pfizer boosters at the Smith Northview campus, appointments and walk-ins are accepted.

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