By Deb Balzer
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded eligibility for a second booster to all adults 50 and older. Mayo Clinic will begin offering the second booster dose to all eligible patients the week of April 11.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated its recommendations to allow people who received an initial booster dose at least four months ago to receive another mRNA booster (Pfizer or Moderna) to increase their protection against severe disease of COVID-19 if they are:
- Age 50 or older.
- Age 12 or older and are immunosuppressed.
Boosters are safe and increase protection from COVID-19. A second booster is especially important for those who are immunosuppressed, those age 65 and older, and those 50 and older with underlying conditions. These are the groups most likely to benefit from the additional boosting.
Adults ages 18–49 who received a primary vaccination and a booster dose of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine at least four months ago also may now receive a second booster dose using an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.
Patients can call their local primary care team to schedule a second COVID-19 booster vaccine dose.
Patients eligible for second COVID-19 vaccine boosters at Mayo Clinic and Mayo Clinic Health System locations have been identified and will be contacted through Patient Online Services to schedule an appointment.
Visit the COVID-19 Information Center for the latest information on COVID-19 and to find details about getting vaccinated for COVID-19 at a Mayo location near you.
Questions and answers
Who can get a second booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine?
At this time, a second booster vaccine dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine is available for the following groups, provided it has been at least four months since their first booster:
- Adults age 50 and older.
- Those age 12 and older who are moderately or severely immunocompromised. This includes those who are in active treatment for solid tumor and hematologic malignancies; have received a solid organ transplant and are taking immunosuppressive therapy; have received CAR-T-cell or hematopoietic stem cell transplant, within two years of transplantation or taking immunosuppression therapy; have moderate or severe primary immunodeficiencies, such as DiGeorge Syndrome; have advanced or untreated HIV infection; are being treated with high-dose corticosteroids, alkylating agents, antimetabolites, transplant-related immunosuppressive drugs, cancer chemotherapeutic agents classified as severely immunosuppressive, inflammation blockers, and other biologic agents that are immunosuppressive or immunomodulatory.
- Those ages 18–49 who have previously received a primary and booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
A second booster is especially important for those 65 and older and those who are immunocompromised, since they are the most likely to benefit from receiving an additional vaccine dose.
Is the second booster dose one or two shots?
The second booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine is a single dose — the same as the first booster dose vaccine.
If I qualify, do I have to wait a certain amount of time after I completed my last COVID-19 vaccination?
The CDC recommends waiting at least four months following the completion of the first booster vaccine. This includes patients who are immunocompromised.
Does the second booster dose of COVID-19 vaccine need to be from the same company as my original COVID-19 vaccine?
It is preferred that a second booster vaccine be the same brand as that used for the primary series and first booster. However, another mRNA vaccine may be substituted if the original is not available, so you can receive Moderna in place of Pfizer if it is not available, or vice versa.
I am immunocompromised and received the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine. Can I get a second booster dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine?
Yes. For anyone (immunocompromised or not) who previously received two doses of the Johnson & Johnson booster vaccine, a second booster using an mRNA vaccine is recommended at least four months after the first booster.