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Expert explains which type of COVID-19 booster shot people should get

booster shots
Posted at 7:04 AM, Oct 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-29 08:10:41-04

TAMPA — As of last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine advisors extended Emergency Use Authorization to all 3 COVID-19 vaccines for boosters.

As a reminder, here’s who can get the extra dose if you originally got Pfizer or Moderna shots:

  • 6 months after your 2nd dose
  • 65 and older
  • High risk of getting severe COVID-19 due to underlying health conditions
  • High risk of exposure due to your job, like healthcare workers

If you received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, here’s when you can get the booster:

  • 2 months after your original shot
  • It’s available for anyone over the age of 18

The CDC also approved mixing and matching different COVID-19 vaccine brands for the booster shot.

“There’s some data presented that shows that mixing and matching works. And in some cases it might work a little bit better than just getting the same dose,” said Dr. Michael Teng, Virologist and Associate Professor at USF Health.

That means when you go get your booster shot you can choose whichever vaccine you want regardless of your original dose.

“They all seem to boost pretty well and in some cases it may even be a little bit better,” said Teng.

So how do you know which booster to get? Experts say if you got the J&J shot, you benefit from if you get a Moderna or Pfizer booster.

“For the J&J it looks like if you get an mRNA booster at least for the time that they measured you have a little bit higher antibody response,” said Teng.

If you received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, experts say you might just want to stick to your original dose.

“If you got the two-dose Pfizer or Moderna it doesn’t seem to make much of a difference if you get an mRNA vaccine or if you get the J&J vaccine as the booster,” said Teng.

Click here for information on where you can get a vaccine.