Following Thursday’s vote by the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) to recommend the updated FDA-approved COVID-19 booster shots for use, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) announced doses would become available statewide next week.
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Initial shipments of the 900,000 booster dose allocation for Texas are expected to arrive at health care providers and retail pharmacies statewide next week.
DSHS said 502,500 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and 192,800 doses of the Moderna vaccine have been appropriated to health care providers and another 200,000 doses to large retail pharmacy chains like H-E-B, CVS, Walgreens, and Walmart.
The bivalent boosters are a single dose of mRNA vaccine and have been updated to provide dual protection from the original strain of COVID-19 and the omicron variant, which is the dominant strain in the country and accounted for 99% of cases in Texas over the past month.
The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster has been authorized for people 12 years and older while the Moderna booster has been authorized for people 18 years and older.
The boosters will be available to those whose last shot, either booster or primary COVID-19 vaccine series, was at least 2 months prior.
According to the latest CDC figures, 62% of Texans are fully vaccinated and 23% of those people have received a booster.
DSHS estimates about 47 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the state since first becoming available in late 2020. The state reported 6,216 new confirmed daily cases of COVID-19 and 23 new deaths on Thursday.
State public health officials are urging Texans to stay current with their COVID vaccination, which includes receiving the updated booster.
The vaccine finder at vaccines.gov can be utilized starting next week to locate nearby clinics, health departments, hospitals, and pharmacies with stock of the new boosters.