California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Saturday announced that the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup is recommending that all adults fully vaccinated with Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines receive a six-month COVID-19 booster shot.
The workgroup concurred with recent federal recommendations that booster doses be given to anyone 50 and older or residing in a long-term care facility and anyone 18 to 49 years old.
Individuals who received a Johnson & Johnson vaccine should receive a booster dose two months after their first shot. The workgroup provided its report to the governors of California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington Saturday.
“As we approach the winter season and another potential surge, it’s critical that people get their booster to strengthen their immunity and protect themselves from COVID-19,” Newsom said.
Because unvaccinated individuals remain at much higher risk of COVID-19 than those who have been vaccinated, the workgroup continues to strongly support vaccination against COVID-19 for everyone age 5 years and older.
On Friday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized expanding booster shot eligibility for the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, and the CDC affirmed that decision. The workgroup reviewed and affirmed the federal decisions in meetings Friday evening and Saturday morning.
The workgroup is made up of nationally acclaimed scientists with expertise in immunization and public health. It will continue to evaluate other COVID-19 vaccines as they go through the federal process.