Second dose booster shots of the Pfizer or Moderna mRNA vaccine are now available at all county health department clinics for eligible individuals, according to the Mississippi State Department of Health.
Eligibility depends on age and health risk. A least a four-month wait between the initial booster shot and the second is required.
- People 50 years of age or older
- People ages 12-17 with weakened immune systems (only the Pfizer vaccine is available for this group)
- Age 18 years or older with a weakened immune system
- Age 18 years or older, who have received a Johnson and Johnson vaccine and a booster shot.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its guidelines allowing certain immunocompromised people and individuals older than 50 to be eligible for a second mRNA booster in late March.
CDC director Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky said in a press statement that the booster is safe and especially important for older adults and people with underlying medical conditions at risk for severe disease from COVID-19.
As of April 18, more than 1.5 million Mississippians have been fully vaccinated, according to MSDH data. Approximately 577,000 people have received a first dose mRNA booster.
Fifty new COVID-19 cases were reported on April 18 bringing the total in the state to 796,546, according to MSDH.
What are the qualifying conditions for a second booster?
- Those receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
- Organ transplants recipients or individuals taking immunosuppressants
- Stem cell transplant recipients within the last two years
- Moderate to severe immunodeficiency
- Those with advanced or untreated HIV infection
- Actively receiving high-dose steroid treatment
- Any condition that can limit your immune response
Eligible individuals should consult with their doctors before receiving a second booster. Vaccination cards showing proof of previous COVID-19 vaccination is recommended.
Maria Clark is a general assignment reporter with The American South. Story ideas, tips, questions? Email her at email@example.com or follow her on Twitter @MariaPClark1. Sign up for The American South newsletter. Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.