SF General Offering ‘Supplemental' Shot to Anyone With J&J Vaccine

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A San Francisco hospital is looking to ease concerns from many who got the Johnson and Johnson vaccine by giving them a different shot.

The idea is controversial. With some calling them boosters even though SF General says that's not the case.

“I’m just really against someone sticking me over and over again,” said Larzine Wright of San Jose.

Last spring, she received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 

“I didn’t anticipate getting a booster shot this early in the game,” Wright said.

But like some others, she has wondered whether getting J&J was the right choice – as many people are now questioning its effectiveness, particularly against the delta variant.

Zuckerberg General Hospital is now offering a "supplemental" Pfizer or Moderna shot to anyone who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and wants more peace of mind. Even though they say the Johnson shot remains a good choice.

“The Johnson & Johnson is a good vaccine,” said Dr. Grant Colfax, San Francisco director of public health. “We will continue to administer it. If people want the Moderna vaccine, then we’ll do that.”

San Francisco's director of public health says no policies have changed, and the city and county will continue to follow CDC rules that prohibit booster shots – but will honor special requests. 

Mayor London Breed, who also got Johnson & Johnson, says she will follow the current recommendations. 

“Why would I want another shot? I barely got the first one, okay?” she said.

Others, like Berkeley's John Pujol, say he’s in no rush to see another needle until the science is clear. 

“Whatever shot you got first will have a beneficial effect, I think, whether it’s a marginal beneficial effect or an enormous beneficial effect, I think time will tell,” he said.

Time will certainly tell whether a supplemental shot will offer more protection. 

Meanwhile, volunteers like these are still trying to convince the 23% of eligible San Franciscans who are unvaccinated to roll up their sleeves. 

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