Another COVID booster is approved for older people and those at high risk
In an amendment issued Tuesday, the Food and Drug Administration changed the authorization for boosters for people 65 and older and those who are immunocompromised.
Both groups are now eligible for another COVID-19 booster shot. This is viewed as an option designed to bolster protection for the most vulnerable Americans even as the pandemic recedes. It will provide a measure of reassurance to those whose age or medical issues put them at risk of serious illness if they are infected by the coronavirus.
Even though many received updated boosters last fall after the omicron-targeting shots were authorized, both patients and physicians recognize the history of waning protection within months of administration of the vaccine.
New boosters for younger healthier people are not yet needed, the agency said, promising to make a recommendation for them early this summer.
Studies have shown that COVID-19 vaccines have been very effective at preventing severe disease and death, but protection against mild disease fades after a few months.
The new ruling allows:
-People 65 and older can get another booster at least four months after their previous one.
-People with some immunocompromising conditions can get boosters as often as every two months, at their doctor’s recommendation.
For healthy, younger people, an infection is not likely to be serious. But for people whose protection is already limited by age or immune status, every infection could be dangerous, which is why the FDA wants them to have access to more frequent shots.