The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention and New York State Gov. Kathy Hochul have expanded the age of those eligible for booster shots to those between 12 to 17.

According to the CDC Advisory Committee (ACIP) it’s now time to expand the eligibility of booster shots between the ages of 12 to 17 after initially expanding the age to 12. They believe that this age group should receive boosters 5 months after their second vaccination.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky stated last week that the more vaccinated, the better.

“It is critical that we protect our children and teens from COVID-19 infection and the complications of severe disease,” said Walensky. “…I endorsed ACIP’s vote to expand eligibility and strengthen our recommendations for booster doses. We now recommend that all adolescents aged 12-17 years should receive a booster shot 5 months after their primary series. This booster dose will provide optimized protection against COVID-19 and the Omicron variant. I encourage all parents to keep their children up to date with CDC’s COVID-19 vaccine recommendations.”

As goes Washington, D.C., so goes New York.

New York State Gov. Kathy Hochul recommended booster shots to those 12-17 years old and also said that “severely immunocompromised” kids between the ages of 5 and 11 should get an additional dose 28 days after their second dose.

According to both the CDC and the state, however, in both cases only the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is authorized for the booster shots.

“As we continue to battle this winter surge, I strongly recommend that all New Yorkers ages 12 and older get boosted as soon they are eligible,” stated Hochul. “With boosters now available for all adolescents, I especially urge parents and guardians to get their children in this age group a booster dose as soon as eligible. A booster dose will provide greater protection against severe outcomes from COVID-19 and help keep our kids healthy, protected, and safe.”

This week, officials in Albany released the latest numbers of COVID cases in the state.

As of Jan. 10, the 7-day average of cases per 100,000 people is 487.21 in New York City, 242.13 in the Capital Region, 402.63 on Long Island, 251.29 in Western New York and 207.03 in Finger Lakes.

New York State Department of Health Acting Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said that New Yorkers shouldn’t go in blind getting booster shots. She said to speak to their personal care provider first.

“Booster doses are a critical tool in our continued response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and I am grateful that they are now available for all New Yorkers 12 years of age and older,” stated Dr. Bassett. “Data show that people who are vaccinated and boosted are more protected against serious illness from COVID-19, and we continue to urge all those eligible to act now. Do what you can to stay healthy and out of the hospital by getting vaccinated and boosted and wear a mask.”

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