Omicron & Booster Update
To Boost (again) or Not to Boost. For bottom-liners, punch-line-first kinds of people, the short answer about whether or not to get the BA.4 BA.5 vaccine is: YES. WHY: Three reasons: Immunity from prior vaccines wanes after several months. The virus changes repeatedly. And having CoVID sucks. IS IT SAFE? We have many pieces of information that give us a lot of confidence in the safety of these vaccines, including that hundreds of millions of doses of mRNA vaccines have been given worldwide without (LEGITIMATE) safety concerts. This booster is made the same way. Bivalent boosters are also not new (cue BA (original) +BA1 booster). WHICH ONE TO GET: Moderna’s booster can be given to anyone 18 and up. Pfizer’s is indicated down to 12 and up. Mixing and matching are good, so if you had Moderna, get Pfizer and vice versa. However: If you are a young male 16-30 or so, I would recommend Pfizer, given the slightly higher risk of myocarditis with Moderna. WHEN: Wait two months from your last CoVID vaccine. Wait 3-4 months if you had Omicron. Those who had Omicron over the holidays/New Year can get the booster now. If you are just getting over CoVID, wait three months. You have natural protection after your recent infection. WHAT ABOUT FLU SHOTS/OTHER VACCINES: Yes. You can get your flu shot and CoVID boosters together. You can get your shingles vaccine and CoVid boosters together. You can get your flu, tetanus, and CoVID shots together. The ONLY exception is the monkeypox vaccine; the CDC recommends waiting four weeks after monkeypox vaccination for your bivalent CoVID booster. WHAT IS GOING ON NOW: Case counts are lower (but probably underestimated due to at-home tests not being reported), hospitalizations and deaths are down, and we have great treatments. BUT, fall/winter and flu season is here. And another atrocious "flurona" season should be avoided if at all possible. Even though for most of us, CoVID is a colossally inconvenient and miserable illness, those who are immunocompromised should get this booster ASAP.
Please note that this information is constantly changing and was current on September 12, 2022.
We will keep you updated as we learn more.