OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) will immediately begin offering booster doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to certain individuals following recommendations from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices (ACIP), and Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup.
At least six months after completing the primary Pfizer vaccine series, the following individuals should receive a booster dose of the Pfizer vaccine:
- People 65 years of age and older,
- People 18 years of age and older living in a long-term care setting, and
- People 50 – 64 years of age with underlying medical conditions or those at increased risk of social inequities.
Additionally, the following individuals who completed a Pfizer vaccine series at least six months ago may receive a Pfizer booster dose:
- People who are 18 – 49 years of age with underlying medical conditions, and
- People 18 – 64 years of age who are at higher risk of COVID-19 exposure and transmission due to their occupational or institutional setting.
“COVID-19 vaccines continue to be highly effective in reducing the risk of severe illness, hospitalization, and death, even against the highly transmissible Delta variant,” said Secretary of Health Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH. “As COVID-19 continues to evolve, booster doses will further protect vaccinated people who are at high-risk and those whose protection has decreased over time.”
At this time, there are not yet recommendations for people who received the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccines. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and FDA will evaluate data in the coming weeks and may make additional recommendations for other vaccine types. However, certain people who are immunocompromised can receive a third dose of an mRNA vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) following recommendations last month from the FDA, ACIP, and Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup.
COVID-19 vaccines have been proven to be safe and effective and are recommended for everyone 12 and older. Currently, there is plenty of vaccine available across the state for everyone who needs a dose. To find a vaccine location near you, visit Vaccine Locator or call the COVID-19 Information Hotline at 1-800-525-0127, then press #. Language assistance is available.