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COVID-19 Booster Shots: Your Questions Answered

COVID-19 Booster Shots: Your Questions Answered

Why do we need a COVID-19 booster?

Getting vaccinated is still the best way to safeguard yourself from becoming infected with COVID-19. Though these vaccines remain highly effective in warding off serious illness, their efficacy may decrease over time. This is why the CDC recommends getting a booster.

Booster shots are additional doses of the original vaccines, bolstering your protection against COVID-19 and its variants. 

Who can get the booster?

Boosters are currently recommended for those 18 years or older who received their second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine 6+ months ago or received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine 2+ months ago.

Learn more about the CDC’s current guidelines for booster eligibility.

Is it safe to mix and match boosters?

Yes, the CDC has approved mixing and matching your initial vaccination and booster shot. So, if you received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine 6+ months ago, you can safely opt for a Moderna booster. While any medical benefits are still under observation, mixing and matching will help you by simplifying your search for a booster (i.e. you don’t need to look for a specific type).

Can I schedule my booster at the same time as my flu shot?

Yes, you can get both the booster and a flu shot at a single appointment at your convenience. Remember that your COVID-19 vaccine doesn’t protect against the flu, so an annual flu shot is still important. 

If you choose to get both shots at the same time, you’ll receive one in each arm. 

Does the booster have side effects?

Just like the original vaccine doses, individual reactions to the booster will vary. You may experience side effects similar to those of your initial vaccination. Common side effects may include: 

  • Soreness and/or swelling at the point of injection
  • Fever
  • Muscle aches
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue

Side effects occur for some people as an immune response and usually last only 24-48 hours. Over-the-counter pain relievers (like ibuprofen) can help ease discomfort.

Feeling fine? Don’t worry, the vaccine is still effective with or without side effects. 

Will I need a booster every year?

It’s possible that a COVID-19 booster will join the flu shot on your annual “To Do” list. For now, it’s important to follow the current guidelines and get your booster to ensure you have the best protection possible. 

Are boosters mandated?

Currently, the definition of “fully vaccinated” does not include a booster shot requirement.  At this time, boosters are not mandated for healthcare workers or employees in the city of Philadelphia. That being said, it’s likely the definition of “fully vaccinated” will be updated to include booster shots, making them mandated for certain individuals. 

What kind of booster is available at vybe?

vybe is only offering Moderna booster shots by appointment.

Do I need my vaccine card to receive a booster?

A vaccine card is not mandatory to receive your booster shot, but your card (or a photo) is the best way we can ensure you’re safely getting your booster at the correct time. It also benefits you to have one card updated with all your COVID-related activity.  If you don’t bring your card, we will issue a new card only for the booster you received from vybe.  

If you received your first two shots at vybe, you can ask for a replacement card at the front desk when you arrive for your appointment. 

Visit your local vybe urgent care for all of you and your family’s urgent care needs, including COVID-19 vaccines, boosters, and testing.