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CDC approves new COVID boosters for original strain, omicron variants

Posted at 10:40 PM, Sep 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-02 00:40:39-04

SALT LAKE CITY — The CDC has signed off on new COVID boosters that target the dominant omicron subvariants. Pfizer also plans to ask the FDA to also authorize the new boosters for children ages five to 11 years old in early October.

“We could be getting those updated boosters here in Salt Lake County as early as tomorrow, friday, or perhaps Tuesday next week, but we just don't know," said Salt Lake County Health Department spokesperson Gabriel Moreno.

The FDA authorized the new bivalent COVID vaccines Wednesday, which target the original strain of the virus and two of the omicron variants.

“Our staff are standing ready," said Moreno. "And as soon as we do have those boosters ready to go into people's arms, we will certainly be making an announcement so that the community knows when those boosters are available.”

Anyone 18 years and older is eligible for the updated Moderna booster, and anyone 12 years and older is eligible for the updated Pfizer-BioNTech booster. It must be at least two months since completing your first vaccination series or your most recent booster dose.

“This edition of the booster that's focused on some of the omicron variants is one more tool that we're adding that can help people mitigate their risk to the disease," said Brian Cowan, Health Officer for the Weber-Morgan Health Department.

Utah health departments are hoping everyone will consider getting the new booster so the community can avoid another spike in COVID cases this fall.

“Vaccinations have been a very effective public health tool that we've had available to us for several decades now," said Cowan. "They have been shown to reduce the amount of days lost at work, days lost at school and reduce hospitalizations and death.”

The Utah Department of Health shares that anyone who has an appointment to get the old booster should reschedule for when the new doses are in stock.