New COVID-19 booster, formulated against Omicron variant, is now accessible: Find out where and why to get your shot

Last month, the FDA licensed using a brand new COVID-19 booster dose that protects against the unique pressure of SARS-CoV-2 in addition to the newer, extra dominant BA.4 and BA.5 strains of the Omicron variant. This new dose, referred to as a bivalent formulation due to its twin safety between the unique pressure and Omicron, is provided by each Pfizer and Moderna, and is really helpful for all New Yorkers ages 12 and up.

“As we continue to contend with the effects of this pandemic on all our lives, we need to ensure we’re using every tool available to us,” stated Governor Kathy Hochul in a launch final week as she introduced the provision of the up to date booster. “Throughout the pandemic, New Yorkers have been smart, looked out for one another, and taken steps to protect themselves and their neighbors. Getting vaccinated and boosted remains our best shot at protecting ourselves and fellow New Yorkers, and I encourage everyone eligible to sign up and get the updated bivalent COVID-19 booster.”

Hochul acquired her personal bivalent booster in East Harlem on Sept. 7.

Governor Kathy Hochul discusses COVID an infection charges earlier than receiving her up to date booster on Sept. 7. Vaccines are the simplest means to shield people and the group against COVID-19. Office of Governor Kathy Hochul/Flickr

Anyone who has acquired at the least the primary two dozes of the Pfizer, Moderna vaccines or single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is inspired to get the up to date booster. 

“The Pfizer as been approved for 12 and older and the Moderna is for 18 and older,” stated Dr. Dana Mazo, infectious illness specialist at NYU Langone Hospital—Brooklyn. “It is approved and recommended for anyone who has already received the primary series. So, you need at least the first two shots of the primary series. If you’ve had one booster, two boosters, or no boosters, it is eligible for everyone, as long as your last COVID-19 vaccine shot was more than two months ago.”

The BA.4 and BA.5 strains of the Omicron variant are presently circulating essentially the most out of all variants within the United States and are anticipated to unfold extra quickly as the autumn and winter method, according to the FDA. The new bivalent boosters are formulated to shield against the BA.4 and BA.5 strains of Omicron.

The negative effects of the bivalent booster are anticipated to be related to all earlier COVID-19 vaccine doses. Recipients of the dose can anticipate ache on the injection website, redness, swelling, in addition to flu-like signs. 

Much like a yearly flu shot, there haven’t been full human trials on this particular formulation of the dose. However, in depth human knowledge from previous doses, each customary and bivalent formulations, recommend that negative effects can be extra of the identical.

“We don’t yet have the human data with this exact vaccine. But, we have tons of human data with the original vaccine and we have good human data with this concept of a bivalent,” Mazo stated. “This is more similar to a flu shot. We do a new flu shot every year, but we don’t require full human testing on the flu shot every year, because that would take too long. And by the time we had the testing, it would be too late.”

To get the brand new booster, Brooklynites ought to attain out to their main care doctor or go to, enter their ZIP code and seek for the “Booster Newly Authorized Bivalent.” Dr. Mazo recommends folks broaden their search to embody each Pfizer and Moderna because the model of earlier doses now not issues. 

“The novel coronavirus has changed over time, with many new variants, including Omicron,” stated Mary T. Bassett, commissioner of the state well being division. “These bivalent boosters for the first time are tailored to a circulating variant. I encourage all eligible New Yorkers to take advantage of this advance and contact their health provider, visit the local pharmacy, or call their county health department to get this booster as soon as possible.”

brooklyn covid infection rates
Brooklyn has the bottom COVID-19 vaccination charges within the borough, and some nabes — like Coney Island — have notably excessive an infection charges. the reformulated COVID booster protects against each the unique pressure of COVID-19 and the Omicron variant. Screenshot/NYC Department of Health

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are anticipated to launch up to date steering on boosters for kids youthful than age 12 within the coming weeks, in accordance to the state well being division. 

The rate of latest COVID circumstances, hospitalizations, and deaths citywide have been steadily reducing since July, in accordance to city data. In Brooklyn, there have been about 500 new circumstances per week for the final a number of weeks, however some Brooklyn nabes have a number of the highest case charges within the metropolis. Coney Island’s optimistic check rate was over 21% between Sept. 5 and 11, in accordance to essentially the most lately accessible knowledge, with 94 folks testing optimistic.

Citywide, unvaccinated folks have had the very best charges of COVID circumstances, hospitalizations, and deaths. Since January 2021, when COVID vaccines first grew to become accessible, greater than 911,000 unvaccinated New Yorkers have examined optimistic for COVID, in accordance to metropolis knowledge, and 8,749 have died. In that very same time-frame, simply over 262,000 vaccinated and boosted folks have examined optimistic for the virus, and 713 have died. Brooklyn has the bottom COVID vaccination charges of the 5 boroighs — simply 73% of Brooklynites are absolutely vaccinated, in accordance to metropolis knowledge, and solely 36% have acquired a booster shot.

To discover and schedule an appointment for a COVID-19 booster, go to or the NYC Department of Health website, or name (877-829-4692).

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