Current Events

Title:Veterans can receive Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster

Author:VAntage Point Contributor

Date:October 2021

Source:VAntage Point Contributor © 2021, Reprinted with permission

Volume:Volume 3 Issue 180

Some Veterans, spouses and caregivers can receive a Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine booster shot from VA.

In line with recommendations from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control (CDC), only people who have already received a full series of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at least six months ago have been authorized to receive a Pfizer booster shot.

The FDA and the CDC continue to review data to determine whether and when it might be recommended for recipients of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (J&J)/Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine(s). VA will plan to offer boosters of these vaccines if authorized and recommended.

Who is eligible for a booster shot?

Here are the Veterans, spouses and caregivers who have been authorized to receive the Pfizer booster:

  • People 65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series;
  • People aged 50-64 years with underlying medical conditions should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series;
  • People aged 18-49 years with underlying medical conditions may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits, and;
  • People aged 18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits.
Not offered at all VA medical centers

The Pfizer booster is not being offered at all VA medical centers. Please contact your local VA facility to find the nearest location where you can receive the booster.

In the meantime, you can get your booster shot at no cost to you outside of VA. You can locate a vaccine site at vaccines.gov/search. Make sure to take your CDC COVID-19 vaccination record card when you go!

VA Secretary: "An important step forward"

"With the authorization of the Pfizer-BioNTech booster for eligible individuals, VA can provide Veterans an opportunity to maximize their protection, continuing our work to keep people safe and save lives during the COVID-19 pandemic," said VA Secretary Denis McDonough.

Veterans will be contacted

Veterans who receive care in VA and are due for booster shots will be contacted and advised of the recommended shots, which may be offered by appointment or on a walk-in basis.

Get your flu shot, too

You can get both the COVID-19 vaccine and your annual flu vaccine at the same time. Veterans receiving care at VA who wish to get a booster shot can get both shots together during the same visit.

Veterans who would like additional information can visit the VA COVID-19 vaccines webpage, visit their local facility's website or contact their care team. If you have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit the VA COVID-19 questions web page.

To read more blogs regarding COVID-19 vaccinations, visit blogs.va.gov/VAntage/?s=vaccination.

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