a person poses with a bandaid on their arm after vaccination

The new boosters protect against the original coronavirus strain and the newer Omicron variants

Earlier this month, the FDA authorized a new COVID-19 booster. These new boosters contain an updated bivalent formula—this means the shot will boost your immunity against the original coronavirus strain and the newer Omicron variants that account for almost all cases in the U.S. Updated boosters provide great protection against the virus and address waning vaccine effectiveness over time.

The new, bivalent booster replaces the original, monovalent vaccine booster for people ages 12+. Any appointment you make for a booster right now—regardless of where you get your shot—will be the new, bivalent booster. (For kids ages 5 through 11, the original booster is still available.)

If you’re 12 or older and it has been at least 2 months since your last COVID shot, you can get a booster now.

The CDC recommends that everyone who is eligible stay up-to-date on vaccinations by getting an updated booster dose at least 2 months after their last COVID-19 shot—either since their last booster dose, or since completing their primary series.

You must be 12 or older to get a Pfizer shot or 18 or older to get a Moderna shot. Provided you meet the age and eligibility requirements, you can get either the Pfizer or Moderna updated booster, regardless of whether your primary series or most recent dose was with Pfizer, Moderna, Novavax, or the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

And great news if you’re also looking to get a flu shot: you can get a flu shot and COVID shot at the same appointment. CDC recommends flu shots for people 6 months old and older. Check with your vaccinator to see if they offer flu shots too.

If you’ve had COVID, it’s still important to get a booster.

The CDC reminds us that recent data suggest COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness at preventing infection or severe illness wanes over time, especially for people ages 65 years and older and people with a compromised immune system. An mRNA booster increases our immune response, which improves protection against getting a serious COVID-19 infection.

If you recently had COVID, the CDC says you may consider waiting to get your booster until three months from the day your symptoms started (or the day of your positive test if you didn’t have symptoms). Talk with your doctor if you have questions about when to get your bivalent booster.

We’re hosting mobile clinics and have extended hours at our East Washington and South Park Street offices.

Special booster clinics

Special thanks to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and AMI Expeditionary Healthcare for collaborating with us to make these clinics happen!  

  • Warner Park Community Center (1625 Northport Drive)
    • Wednesday (9/21): 10:00am-6:00pm
    • Saturday (9/24): 8:00am-4:00pm
  • Elver Park Indoor Shelter (1250 McKenna Blvd)
    • Thursday & Friday (9/22 and 9/23): 10:00am-6:00pm
  • Additional dates may be added. Check our website for the schedule of the week.

Mobile clinics

We continue to host mobile clinics throughout the week at places like libraries, community centers, and more. We will have boosters available at these clinics too. Check our map to see if we’ll be in your neighborhood soon.

Extended hours at our office locations

We’re extending the hours of clinics in our offices for the next few weeks!

  • S. Park Street clinic (2230 S Park St, Madison)
  • E. Washington clinic (2705 E Washington Ave, Madison)

Local pharmacies and healthcare providers are also offering booster doses.

Check with your local pharmacy to see if they are offering the booster. Many have appointments available now! You can find more vaccinators by visiting vaccines.gov. Your doctor’s office may also have boosters available.

This content is free for use with credit to the City of Madison - Public Health Madison & Dane County and a link back to the original post.