Booster Dose Recommended for Older Teens

Booster Dose Recommended for Older Teens

December 10, 2021

National experts have updated their booster recommendations to allow fully vaccinated 16 and 17 year old teens to enhance and extend their protection against COVID-19, according to the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH)

A single booster dose of vaccine is now recommended for those who received their second dose at least six months ago.  At this time, only the Pfizer-BioNTech/COMINARTY vaccine is authorized for individuals aged 16-17 years.

Previous booster recommendations have included anyone 18 and over who received their second Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine dose at least six months ago and anyone 18 and over who received a Johnson and Johnson (Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine at least two months ago.

Dr. Alexia Harrist, state health officer and state epidemiologist with WDH, said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated the booster recommendations following authorization by the federal Food and Drug Administration.

“While booster recommendations continue to evolve, we also continue to encourage eligible adults and children to say yes to free, safe and effective vaccination if they haven’t already,” Harrist said. “COVID-19 vaccines continue to offer protection against COVID-19, including the variants. Vaccines are especially good at helping to prevent severe illness.”

Severe illness means that a person with COVID-19 may need hospitalization, intensive care, a ventilator to help them breathe or they may even die.

Youth ages 12 and older are eligible for the Pfizer vaccine and children ages 5-11 are eligible for a dose of the Pfizer vaccine meant for that age group if they haven’t yet been vaccinated.

All COVID-19 vaccine doses, including boosters, continue to be offered at no cost.

Convenient ways to find where to get COVID-19 vaccines include:

  • Visit govor vacunas.gov online to search and find vaccine sites.
  • Text your ZIP codeto 438829 (GETVAX) or 822862 (VACUNA) to find up to three nearby locations that have vaccines available.
  • Call the National COVID-19 Vaccination Assistance Hotline at 1-800-232-0233 for phone-based help.

More than 76,000 Wyoming adults have already received a third dose of either a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.

Harrist noted it is considered safe to get a flu shot and a COVID-19 vaccine dose at the same time.

More information from WDH about vaccination in Wyoming can be found at https://health.wyo.gov/publichealth/immunization/wyoming-covid-19-vaccine-information/.