COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - Effective immediately, millions of Americans are eligible to receive their COVID-19 booster shot, and El Paso County Health officials say they are ready to administer third doses in the community.
“We do have the resources in El Paso County. I would recommend that folks that are eligible for that booster dose that they reach out to the provider they received the primary series through. That’s a great first step,” said Kristi Durbin, the Immunization Program Manager for El Paso Co. Health.
El Paso Co. Health has received recommendations by the CDC advisory council on dispersement of the Pfizer COVID-19 booster shots to the community. El Paso Co. Health says it has more than 100 enrolled COVID-19 vaccine providers ready to administer Pfizer booster shots.
According to the Colorado Department of Public Health, Colorado’s four large community vaccination sites in Aurora, Colorado Springs, Commerce City, and Littleton can each accommodate up to 1,000 doses per day and can provide first, second, and booster doses. The Colorado Springs community vaccine site is located at the Chapel Hills Mall. Each site is open until September 30.
Eligible booster recipients needed to receive their first two doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, and it must be more than 6 months since their second dose. If you meet these two requirements then you may receive the booster shot if you fall under the following categories:
-People age 65 or older are urged to get their booster shots as soon as possible.
-Residents in long term care facilities are urged to get their booster shots.
-People ages 50-64 living with underlying medical conditions are urged to get their booster shots.
-The CDC says people ages 18-49 living with underlying medical conditions are permitted to receive their booster shots.
-Front line workers or those with an increased occupational risk are permitted to receive their third shot of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine as well.
“We are always looking at data we are looking at people who are the highest risk for acquiring COVID-19 or maybe people didn’t have a great immune response to the primary series (of Pfizer). Healthy individuals usually have a great immune response. We are always trying to protect the people with the highest risk,” said Durbin.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment says they do not require a prescription or doctor’s note in order for those eligible front line workers or those with underlying medical conditions to obtain the Pfizer booster. Self-attestation and your booster card is all that is required.
Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine recipients are not eligible for the booster shots, but Moderna vaccine recipients are eligible to get booster shots so long as they are immunocompromised. El Paso Co. Health says these policies could change soon.
“I don’t have a timeline, but soon. (The CDC) are continuously looking at data. When they have the data that they need, then we will receive a recommendation. Pfizer came out first so we have more data there. We believe the modern and Johnson & Johnson should follow,” said Durbin.