What to Know About the FDA-Approved Second COVID-19 Booster

NBC Universal, Inc.

The FDA has authorized a second COVID-19 booster shot from Pfizer or Moderna for people 50 and older, but the question for many is whether or not they need it.

One doctor put it this way: The second booster shot is more of a "could" do instead of a "should" do, something one could do if they feel at risk or are concerned that their immunity is waning.

What to know about the second booster

  • People 50 and older are eligible for the second booster.
  • Eligible people must wait at least four months after their first booster.
  • For immunocompromised individuals as young as 12, this would be an authorized fifth dose.
  • Check with your local doctor, pharmacy or health department to see where and when to get the second booster.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as health experts still recommend people receive the first booster shot, but so far less than half of those eligible have been boosted.

"I think everyone expects there to be a surge with a new variant," UCSF infectious disease expert Dr. Peter Chin-Hong says. "By being proactive, people in a non-urgent way can protect themselves as much as possible. Given the fact that the vaccine is well tolerated, you want to protect the most vulnerable folks.”

Some Bay Area public health departments such as Contra Costa Health Services already are preparing for or have begun offering the second booster shots at their vaccine clinics.

Contact Us