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New guidance on COVID-19 vaccine boosters

Section 1

October 27, 2021

New guidance on COVID-19 vaccine boosters

Last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated recommendations for certain persons who have received a primary two-dose Moderna or Pfizer vaccine series, or the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson’s (J&J) single-dose vaccine, as a result of the Food and Drug Administration’s authorization of boosters. This is new guidance, in addition to the recommendations shared in the campus message dated Oct. 4.

Many additional members of our community may be eligible for booster vaccine doses under the updated guidance, which recommends boosters for people who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines more than six months ago and work in healthcare or education settings and anyone 18 years or older who received J&J two months ago.

CDC Recommendations

According to the CDC, the following categories of individuals who received a Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine are eligible for a booster shot at 6 months or more after their initial series:

  • 65 years and older
  • Age 18+ who live in long-term care settings
  • Age 18+ who have underlying medical conditions
  • Age 18+ who work or live-in high-risk settings

J&J booster shots are also recommended for those who are 18 and older and who were vaccinated two or more months ago. In addition, eligible individuals may choose which vaccine they want as a booster dose. Some people may have a preference for the vaccine type they originally received and others may prefer to get a different booster. CDC’s recommendations allow for this type of mix and match dosing for booster shots.

The University of California recommends boosters for those who are eligible. Vaccine is widely available from healthcare providers, clinics and pharmacies. At this time, UCI is not organizing employee vaccine clinics on campus.

However, UCI Health patients who are eligible can receive vaccine booster doses from UCI Health clinics, including Gottschalk Medical Plaza. Log into MyChart for additional information. Check https://www.ucihealth.org/covid-19 periodically for information about upcoming special vaccination and booster events.

Front-line healthcare professionals and medical center employees should follow the guidance issued by UCI Health.

If you have questions about the vaccine or boosters, please contact UCI's Contact Tracing and Vaccine Navigation Services team. The team is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer questions and help individuals find vaccine appointments at 949-824-2300 or contacttracing@uci.edu.

UCI is not yet collecting verification of third doses or boosters, but information on that process will be shared when it becomes available. For the latest COVID-19 information, please continue to visit the UCI Forward website at www.uci.edu/coronavirus.


David Souleles, MPH
Director, COVID-19 Response Team