As the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health continues to focus on delivering the first doses of the vaccine to communities across the county, vaccination centers are preparing to provide boosters to anyone in need of vaccination.
Today, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) met and approved booster vaccines for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines and determined that consumers can choose a brand other than their original vaccine as a booster vaccine. Once the CDC director has given final approval, providers across the county will be able to administer additional doses.
The CDC and FDA recommendations allow booster doses of all three FDA-approved vaccines – Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson. Eligibility depends on which vaccine you originally received: anyone who received Johnson & Johnson more than two months ago is entitled to a booster vaccine. In the meantime, refresher eligibility for those who have received Pfizer or Moderna is currently limited to those who received their Primary Series at least 6 months ago and who are either 65 years of age or older, or over 18 years of age and live in long-term care facilities and Have pre-existing medical conditions or work or live in high-risk environments. People can get booster vaccinations of either the vaccine they originally received or a different vaccine.
Public Health estimates that 1.7 million LA Counties received their second dose of Pfizer at least 6 months ago, 1.5 million received their two Moderna doses at least 6 months ago, and 470,000 residents received their Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least two months ago have received. Many of these people will be eligible for boosters once final approval from the CDC director is received.
The FDA and CDC are expected to approve and recommend Pfizer vaccines for children ages 5-11 in early November. This will result in 900,000 new children in LA County being eligible for pediatric doses of Pfizer’s vaccine. Pediatric doses of Pfizer vaccine are smaller than adult and adolescent vaccine doses, 10 versus 30 micrograms, but the dosing schedule is the same: for children, adolescents, and adults, two doses are given 21 days apart.
Currently, the county expects to receive nearly 96,000 doses as part of our first wave of vaccine shipments in the first week of November, with many more doses arriving in two more waves very soon after. The doses are prorated to the county and the rest of the country; based on your population. We do not anticipate a shortage and expect that there will be enough vaccines to meet demand.
A huge network of vendors across the country is growing to provide vaccines to children between the ages of 5 and 11.
Submitted by: LA County Department of Public Health