HomeColumnsUpdated COVID-19 Vaccine Helps Prevent Against New Variants

Updated COVID-19 Vaccine Helps Prevent Against New Variants

The new COVID-19 vaccine is now available in various pharmacies across Lucas County.

On Monday, Sept. 11 the FDA announced an updated COVID-19 vaccine that would closely target the different variants that have been circulating and to shield individuals from severe cases that could result in hospitalization and death.

The vaccine is strongly recommended for anyone aged six months and older.

“Vaccination remains critical to public health and continued protection against serious consequences of COVID-19, including hospitalization and death,” Peter Marks, M.D., Ph.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said.

“The public can be assured that these updated vaccines have met the agency’s rigorous scientific standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality. We very much encourage those who are eligible to consider getting vaccinated.”

Lucas County has seen a drastic jump in COVID-19 cases in the last two months, with 965 cases so far in August and September, compared to the 345 in June and July. This new vaccine could help slow the spread of these new COVID-19 variants.

Anyone ages five and older can receive one dose of the new mRNA COVID-19 vaccine regardless of past vaccines if it has been two months since your last dose.

Unvaccinated children aged six months through four years old can receive three doses of the updated authorized Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine or two doses of the updated authorized Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. Those who have previously received a vaccine against COVID-19 will be eligible for one or two doses of the updated mRNA COVID-19 vaccine depending on how many doses they have previously received.

“For those age five and older, a single dose of the updated vaccine is all you need to be up to date, regardless of previous vaccination status and even if you’ve never had any previous COVID vaccinations,” Dr. Fryhofer, America Medical Association immediate past board chair, said. “This is because everyone aged five and older is thought to have at least some immunity to COVID from vaccines, from previous infection or both. Those with immunocompromising conditions need a three-dose prime and at least one updated shot. They can also get additional doses of the new vaccine if their physician recommends it.”

The federal government requires most insurances to provide the COVID-19 vaccine for free. If you do not have insurance or if your insurance does not cover the whole vaccine bill, you can receive a free vaccine through the CDC’s Bridge Access Program.

To see if you are eligible for the updated COVID-19 vaccine and  find what pharmacies are providing doses, visit https://gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov.

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