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COVID-19: Should You Get Your Booster Shot?

“Fully vaccinated” has meant “one and done” for J&J COVID vaccine, or two jabs with Pfizer or Moderna after 14 days have passed. Now there is talk of boosters.

If you are contemplating another jab, you might want to look at results from one of the most vaccinated places in the world, which now requires updating your vaccine pass: Israel. The unvaccinated population has the lowest death rate from severe COVID (see graph). The figures are confounded by the fact that the unvaccinated population is younger. Worldometers shows that daily deaths began to spike just after Pfizer boosters were introduced on Aug 15.


Questions include: (1) Is there waning immunity? (2) Should boosters be targeted only to certain risk groups? (3) How effective are boosters? (4) Is there an increased risk of adverse effects?

After a recent meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), FDA rejected Israel’s policy of universal boosters, but has amended the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to allow them for elderly and at-risk populations at least six months after completing the initial series. Comments submitted to the Committee are publicly available. David Wiseman, Ph.D., and others wrote that: “There is inadequate evidence for safety of booster doses amidst mounting concerns for first two doses.”

The studies on boosters are limited both in numbers of subjects and duration of follow-up. As with other questions on COVID and vaccinations, there are starkly differing predictions from skeptics and vaccine advocates. Former New York Times reporter Alex Berenson writes: “Only one can be right. Let’s check back in six months.”

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