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Anyone 12 years of age and older is eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.

Find your nearest vaccination location at https://www.vaccines.gov/ or call (833) 621-1284 to schedule an appointment near you.

Additional Dose and Booster Shot FAQ

Is an additional dose the same as a booster shot?

No. An additional dose is different from a booster dose.

Some people, those who are immunocompromised, may not develop the same immune response level after vaccination as others. An additional dose is recommended for those individual to help them build the same level of immunity as people who are not immunocompromised.

A booster shot is recommended as protection from the vaccine wanes over time.

Who should get a booster shot of COVID-19 vaccine?

On September 24, 2021 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) endorsed the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP) recommendation for a booster shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in certain populations and also recommended a booster dose for those in high risk occupational and institutional settings. The Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) authorization and CDC’s guidance for use are important steps forward as we work to stay ahead of the virus and keep Americans safe. IDPH fully supports the CDC recommendations.

This updated interim guidance from CDC allows for millions of Americans who are at highest risk for COVID-19 to receive a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster shot to help increase their protection.

CDC recommends:

  • people 65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series,
  • people aged 50–64 years with underlying medical conditions should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series,
  • people aged 18–49 years with underlying medical conditions may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks, and
  • people aged 18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks

More information can be found here: Who Is Eligible for a COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shot? | CDC

Who should get an additional an additional dose of vaccine?

Currently, individuals with moderately to severely compromised immune systems are recommended for an additional dose of COVID-19 vaccine if they previously received a two-dose primary series of either the Pfizer BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines.   This includes people currently receiving treatment for cancer, people taking medications that weaken the immune systems, organ or stem cell transplant recipients, individuals with advanced or untreated HIV infection, and other conditions.  A full list of conditions can be found on CDC’s website.  If you are unsure if you are recommended for an additional dose, talk with your health care provider.  The third dose of Pfizer BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine can be given anytime 28 days after receiving the second dose.

An additional dose is being recommended after emerging data suggests some people with moderately to severely compromised immunes systems do not always build the same level of immunity as individuals who do not have a compromised immune system.  An additional dose will help ensure people with compromised immune systems get as much protection as possible from COVID-19 vaccination.

More information can be found here: COVID-19 Vaccines for Moderately to Severely Immunocompromised People | CDC

Can I get any type of COVID-19 vaccine for the additional dose or booster dose?

No. You should receive the same brand of vaccine you received for your first and second doses, either Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech.

When will the general public be able to get a booster shot?

At this time, booster dose recommendations are only available for certain individuals that have received a 2-dose primary series of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. As additional study data are analyzed, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices will vote to determine whether booster doses should be recommended for additional individuals who received a primary series of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine or other U.S. authorized COVID-19 vaccines.

Do I need an additional dose or booster shot if I received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine?

Additional dose:

At this time, an extra dose is not recommended for individuals who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices will review data regarding additional doses and more information will be available after its recommendations.

Booster dose:

At this time, a booster dose is not recommended for individuals who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices will review data regarding booster doses and more information will be available after its recommendations.

Do I need an additional dose or booster shot if I received the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine?

Additional dose:

At this time, an additional dose is recommended for moderately to severely immune compromised individuals who received a 2-dose primary series of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. See “Who should get an additional dose of vaccine”.

Booster dose:

At this time, a booster dose is not recommended for other individuals who received a 2-dose primary series of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. The Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices will review data regarding booster doses and more information will be available after its recommendations.

Do I need an additional dose or booster shot if I received the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine?

Additional dose:

At this time, an additional dose is recommended for moderately to severely immune compromised individuals who received a 2-dose primary series of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. See “Who should get an additional dose of vaccine”.

Booster dose:

At this time, a booster dose is recommended for certain individuals who received the 2-dose primary series of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines. The Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices will review data regarding booster doses for additional individuals and more information will be available after its recommendations. See “Who should geta booster dose of vaccine”.

Why do I need a booster shot?

While the COVID-19 vaccines currently authorized in the U.S. continue to be effective in reducing the risk of severe disease, hospitalization and death, including protection against the Delta variant, many vaccines see reduced protection over time.   At this time, certain individuals who received a two-dose Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine series may receive a booster shot to protect themselves as the primary series wanes over time.

Where can I get an additional dose or a booster shot?

Many vaccine providers, such as local health departments, clinics, and pharmacies, are able to provide additional doses or booster doses. You can find a vaccine provider at www.vaccines.gov or call 1-800-232-0244 (TTY 888-720-7489). 

Should an immunocompromised person who gets the additional dose also get a booster dose 6-months later?

At this time, a booster shot is not recommended after an additional dose.