The updated Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccine bivalent boosters are now available in New York City and are recommended for everyone 5 years of age or older, even if they have already received a previous booster dose.
The updated boosters provide new and better protection and increase your immunity from prior doses. They are called “bivalent” because half of the dose specifically targets the Omicron subvariants that account for nearly all recent infections in NYC.
On October 12, 2022, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) amended the emergency use authorizations (EUAs) of the bivalent Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine and the bivalent Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to authorize their use as a single booster dose in younger age groups.
The updated Moderna booster is authorized to be given to people 6 years and older at least two months following the completion of primary or booster vaccination, while the updated Pfizer-BioNTech booster is authorized to be given to people 5 years and older at least two months following the completion of primary or booster vaccination. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also recommends updated boosters for children ages 5-11.
People ages 6 and older can get either the Pfizer or Moderna booster, regardless of which brand of vaccine they had previously received. However, children aged 5 can only receive the Pfizer booster at this time. Children younger than 5 are currently not eligible for a booster dose.
Expanded eligibility for updated booster vaccines
|Who is recommended for an updated bivalent booster?||When should eligible individuals receive an updated bivalent, booster shot?|
If someone recently had COVID-19, they can wait to get a booster until three months after they first felt symptoms. If they were asymptomatic or had no symptoms, they can wait three months after their COVID test date. Someone may want to get a booster sooner than three months after they had COVID-19 if they are at higher risk of severe disease or are at risk of getting COVID-19 again. A high-risk individual includes someone who is immunocompromised or someone who works in a setting where they are consistently exposed to COVID-19.
New Yorkers can check with their providers to decide when it is the best time for them to get their next dose or if their provider is offering updated boosters. The Vaccine Finder tool is available to search for locations offering shots including updated boosters.
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COVID-19 Bivalent Vaccine Boosters
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Boosting New York City’s Immunity with New Bivalent Vaccines
Outcomes of New York City’s COVID-19 Contact Tracing Program