COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters and Additional Doses Version en Español Vaccines are the best protection from COVID-19. The COVID-19 vaccines authorized in the United States are remarkably effective in reducing risk of severe disease, hospitalization and death, even against the widely circulating Delta variant. In some cases, additional vaccine protection is recommended like an additional dose (for immunocompromised people) and boosters (for everyone, once they’re authorized). Boosters: FDA Recommends, But Not Yet Available Although we continue to see highly effective protection against severe cases of COVID-19 in those fully vaccinated, public health experts are starting to see some reduced protection against mild and moderate COVID-19 infections in vaccinated people. To address this, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) may soon authorize "booster" vaccine shots to provide continued protection. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will then recommend who should get a booster shot and when. Once authorized and available, people who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines will be eligible for a booster, likely starting six months after their second dose. Research is still underway on boosters for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. NEW: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) met on Friday, Sept. 17 to review booster data on the Pfizer vaccine. Advisors to the FDA have recommended its use for individuals 65 years of age and older, individuals at high risk of severe COVID-19 and individuals at high risk of occupational exposure. However, NCDHHS reminds North Carolinians that this must now be reviewed and recommended by the CDC before Pfizer boosters become available. Boosters are not yet available. Sign up for a free email to be notified when boosters are authorized and with details on how to get a booster: Getting ready for your booster: You will need to know the dates of your vaccination, which brand you received (Pfizer vs. Moderna) and be ready to find a vaccine location near you at MySpot.nc.gov. Additional Doses: Authorized For Immunocompromised People Emerging data suggest some people with moderately to severely compromised immune systems do not always build the same level of immunity after vaccination and can get extra protection from an additional dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. These additional doses are approved and available now for those who qualify. Moderately or severely immunocompromised due to a medical condition or receipt of immunosuppressive medications or treatments? These conditions and treatments include but are not limited to: Active treatment for solid tumor and hematologic malignancies Receipt of solid-organ transplant and taking immunosuppressive therapy Receipt of chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T-cell or hematopoietic stem cell transplant (within 2 years of transplantation or taking immunosuppression therapy) Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (e.g., DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome) Advanced or untreated HIV infection (people with HIV and CD4 cell counts <200/mm3, history of an AIDS-defining illness without immune reconstitution, or clinical manifestations of symptomatic HIV) Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids, alkylating agents, antimetabolites, transplant-related immunosuppressive drugs, cancer chemotherapeutic agents classified as severely immunosuppressive, tumor-necrosis (TNF) blockers, and other biologic agents that are immunosuppressive or immunomodulatory. More information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Don't Wait To Vaccinate If you are not vaccinated, your risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 is much higher. Nearly all cases of severe disease, hospitalization and death continue to occur among those not yet vaccinated. Tested, safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines are the best tool for preventing all cases of COVID-19. Find a vaccine location near you If you have more questions, we encourage you to read our FAQs, call the NC COVID-19 Vaccine Help Center at 888-675-4567, or send us a message.