New York – The upcoming COVID-19 booster is expected to be available in the US as early as next week, possibly as soon as Sept. 13, and promises to prevent severe illness and death from the currently circulating variant.
First, the US Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize or approve the shot, which they have indicated is likely within the next seven days.
Next, an independent advisory group to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is scheduled to meet Sept. 12 to make recommendations on who should be eligible for the shot. The director of the CDC is expected to sign off and the vaccine will be available soon.
It remains to be seen who the advisor will recommend for the updated booster. Experts say the extra protection is especially important for high-risk groups, such as those over 65 and those who are immunocompromised.
What is the formula for this new vaccine?
The updated booster is formulated for XBB.1.5 (an omicron sub-variant).
It is a monovalent vaccine, meaning it targets only one strain (the previous bivalent booster vaccine was formulated with the original strain and BA.4/BA.5).
Will this new vaccine protect against the new variant?
Data so far suggest that the booster will provide additional protection against severe disease and death for all currently circulating variants.
Vaccine makers told ABC News they continue to test the updated booster on newer variants, including the newer omicron subvariant BA.2.86.
The updated booster produced a nearly nine-fold increase in the BA.2.86 antibody, according to early lab results released Wednesday in a news release by the Massachusetts-based biotech company Moderna. New York City-based pharmaceutical company Pfizer may soon release similar data on its new vaccine.
Previous results from Moderna suggest that its newer booster provides additional protection against the subvariants EG.5 and FL.1.5.1, which now dominate the U.S., accounting for an estimated 36% of new cases.
When will this new vaccine booster be available?
The updated booster shot is expected to be available Sept. 13 after approval by the CDC director
Should I wait to get this new booster or get the injection now?
Health experts recommend waiting for a newer booster shot this fall and winter for maximum protection.
Should I get a booster shot if I have recently had COVID-19?
According to the CDC, you may consider postponing vaccinations for three months from the day you developed symptoms or tested positive.
Can I get the flu shot and the COVID-19 booster shot at the same time?
Currently, health officials say the vaccine is safe and effective when given twice in the same course of treatment.
* Get Eyewitness News
* Follow us on YouTube
* more local news
* Send us a news alert
* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts
Submit a tip or story idea to Eyewitness News