ST. LOUIS — In Tuesday's Ask Allie we're talking about COVID-19 booster shots, specifically for those of you who didn't get the Pfizer vaccine.
Viewer John sent Today in St. Louis’ Allie Corey an email that read:
"my wife and I received the J&J COVID vaccine in March. We are both 65+. We want a booster. We know the J&J booster hasn't been officially approved, but we don't want to wait. Is the booster shot different from the initial vaccine?"
John, we took your question to Dr. Rachel Charney, medical director for emergency preparedness at SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital.
“The recommendation at this point is that you get the booster dose that goes along with the vaccine that you were given. So, at this time, that's why Pfizer is the group that’s up for recommendation for booster. It’s unclear yet if there is going to be a recommendation for mixing and matching the booster doses but both Moderna and Johnson and Johnson are slated to go up for evaluation for booster doses in the next week or two,” Dr. Charney said.
Over 15 million Americans received the Johnson and Johnson vaccine and the company is planning to ask the FDA for authorization for its booster this week.
The company said an additional second shot increased effectiveness to 94% compared to 70% protection with the single dose.
According to the CDC's website, there simply isn’t enough data to recommend getting another shot of the J&J vaccine.
“Right now, there is not enough data to determine whether immunocompromised people who received the Johnson & Johnson's Janssen COVID-19 vaccine also have an improved antibody response following an additional dose of the same vaccine."
Until the FDA reviews J&J’s data, those who received the J&J vaccine will have to wait for their extra boost.