Doses available in Spokane County as state marks 675,000 coronavirus vaccine boosters

<p><p>More than 675,000 Washington residents have received booster doses of the coronavirus vaccine.</p></p><p><p>State health officials encourage everyone who is eligible to get a booster dose, especially those at higher risk for developing complications with the virus.</p></p><p><p>The need for boosters is estimated to be about six months after a person is fully vaccinated with either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines and two months after receiving a Johnson &amp; Johnson vaccine.</p></p><p><p>“It’s absolutely critical for those people at higher risk because of occupation or age,” State Secretary of Health Dr. Umair Shah told reporters this week.</p></p><p><p>While the vaccines are incredibly effective at preventing hospitalization and severe illness, over time, their protection will wane, Shah said.</p></p><p><p>You can mix and match vaccines for your booster dose.</p></p><p><p>The following groups are eligible for a booster if they received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine at least six months ago:</p></p><p><ul><li>All people 65 and older</li><li>Anyone 18 and older who has underlying health conditions</li><li>Anyone 18 and older who lives in a long-term care setting or works in a high-risk setting, like health care, frontline workers and grocery store workers.</li></ul></p><p><p>In addition, anyone who received the Johnson &amp; Johnson vaccine at least two months ago is now eligible for a booster.</p></p><p><p>Health officials are also encouraging people who have tested positive for COVID-19 to get the vaccine too. While infection provides some immunity, not everyone produces the same amount of antibodies, and it’s possible to test positive for the virus again, especially if there’s a new variant circulating.</p></p><p><p>Vaccination offers protection, particularly against severe disease and hospitalization or death, and <a href=”https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7032e1.htm?s_cid=mm7032e1_e&amp;ACSTrackingID=USCDC_921-DM63289&amp;ACSTrackingLabel=MMWR” target=”_blank”>evidence is beginning to show</a> that vaccination might offer more comprehensive protection than just getting the virus.</p></p><p><p>Vaccination following infection is the most comprehensive way to be protected from future infection, Dr. Francisco Velázquez said this week.</p></p><p><p>After a person’s symptoms have resolved, they can get the COVID-19 vaccine. If you’ve been treated with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you should wait 90 days before getting the vaccine.</p></p><p><p>If you have more questions about when you should get vaccinated following infection, contact your health care provider.</p></p><p><p>Booster doses are available in Spokane County, and CHAS clinics throughout the region recently began offering pediatric doses of the vaccine.</p></p><p><p>To find a vaccine, visit <a href=”https://vaccinelocator.doh.wa.gov” target=”_blank”>the state’s vaccine locator tool</a> or call (833) VAX-HELP.</p></p><p><p>There are no new case counts to report due to local health districts not being open on Veterans Day.</p></p>