Federal Moderna, Johnson & Johnson booster dose recommendations under review

Earlier today, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), a panel of medical and public health experts convened by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) made recommendations to:

  • Make booster doses of the Moderna vaccine available to certain groups who received two doses of the Moderna vaccine at least 6 months previously. These include people age 65 and older; and people 18 years and older who live or work in high-risk settings, live in long-term care settings, have underlying health conditions or have disabilities (including intellectual/developmental disabilities).
  • Make booster doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine available to everyone 18 years and older who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least 2 months previously.

The committee also considered heterologous doses or a “mix and match” approach to booster doses. This would mean people eligible to receive the Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson booster dose could use any COVID-19 vaccine as their booster dose. This would allow people to get a booster dose at any location that provides COVID-19 vaccines.

  • The committee’s final vote did not formally endorse the mix and match approach.
  • The CDC still needs to issue official recommendations and update their clinical considerations after review of the committee’s recommendations.
  • This topic will be reviewed more closely in the Western States Scientific Safety Review Group as well.

Oregon is ready to make additional booster doses available to people who are eligible to receive one, if the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup endorses the CDC’s decisions.

  • While Oregon currently has an adequate supply of all three vaccines, provider capacity could mean that booster shots may not be available on-demand in some communities.
  • Medical evidence shows that all three COVID-19 vaccines are safe and highly effective at preventing severe COVID-19 illness and death.

The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup convenes later today to consider the federal recommendations.

To learn more, read the Oregon Health Authority’s news release.