CDC expands COVID-19 booster recommendations to those 18 and over
Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention strengthened its recommendation on booster doses yesterday for individuals who are 18 years and older. Everyone ages 18 and older should get a booster shot either when 6 months after their initial Pfizer or Moderna series or 2 months after their initial J&J vaccine.
The recent emergence of the Omicron variant further emphasizes the importance of vaccination, boosters, and prevention efforts needed to protect against COVID-19. Early data from South Africa suggest increased transmissibility of the Omicron variant, and scientists in the United States and around the world are urgently examining vaccine effectiveness related to this variant.
“I strongly encourage the 47 million adults who are not yet vaccinated to get vaccinated as soon as possible and to vaccinate the children and teens in their families as well because strong immunity will likely prevent serious illness. I also want to encourage people to get a COVID-19 test if they are sick. Increased testing will help us identify Omicron quickly,” CDC Director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a press release on Monday.
To stop the spread of COVID-19, follow the prevention strategies proven to work:
• Authorized COVID-19 vaccines can help protect from COVID-19.
• You should get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as you can.
• Once fully vaccinated, you may be able to start doing some things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic.
WEAR A MASK
• Everyone 2 years or older who is not fully vaccinated should wear a mask in indoor public places.
• In general, you do not need to wear a mask in outdoor settings.
• In areas with high numbers of COVID-19 cases, consider wearing a mask in crowded outdoor settings and for activities with close contact with others who are not fully vaccinated.
• People who have a condition or are taking medications that weaken their immune system may not be fully protected even if they are fully vaccinated. They should continue to take all precautions recommended for unvaccinated people, including wearing a well-fitted mask, until advised otherwise by their healthcare provider.
• If you are fully vaccinated, to maximize protection and prevent possibly spreading COVID-19 to others, wear a mask indoors in public if you are in an area of substantial or high transmission.
• Stay 6 feet away from others
• Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated spaces
• Being in crowded places like restaurants, bars, fitness centers, or movie theaters puts you at higher risk for COVID-19.
• Avoid indoor spaces that do not offer fresh air
• If indoors, bring in fresh air by opening windows and doors
BE ALERT FOR SYMPTOMS
• Watch for fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19.
• Take your temperature if symptoms develop.
Monitoring symptoms is especially important if you are running errands, going into the office or workplace, and in settings where it may be difficult to keep a physical distance of 6 feet.