Recommendations involving vaccine booster doses have been updated as the COVID-19 Omicron variant quickly spread in Wyoming and across the nation.
State Health Officer and State Epidemiologist Dr. Alexia Harrist says recent variant sequencing results combined with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates show the Omicron variant has quickly become the most common version causing new COVID-19 infections in the state.
Dr. Harrist says, “While we aren’t yet certain how much severe illness will accompany the increase in cases, we do know vaccines are the best tool we have to protect people from severe illness,” The CDC updated its vaccine recommendations this week to include booster doses for fully vaccinated youth ages 12-15.
A single booster dose of vaccine is now recommended for anyone ages 12 and over who received their second Pfizer dose at least five months ago. At this time, only the Pfizer vaccine is authorized for individuals aged 12-17 years. Adults 18 and over who received their second Moderna COVID-19 dose at least six months ago or who received a Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine at least two months ago are also eligible for booster doses.
Most children ages 5-11 are eligible for two doses of the Pfizer vaccine meant for that age group if they haven’t yet been vaccinated. A third dose for children in this age group who have moderately or seriously compromised immune systems was also authorized and recommended this week.