With updated COVID-19 booster vaccines now authorized and recommended for use, doses are expected to begin shipping over the next few days and arriving at health care providers across Texas next week.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has allocated a total of about 900,000 doses of the updated boosters to Texas, including 502,500 doses of the Pfizer vaccine and 192,800 doses of the Moderna vaccine available for order by health care providers. Another approximately 200,000 doses will be available through large retail pharmacies like H-E-B, CVS, Walgreens and Walmart.
The updated “bivalent” vaccines are different from earlier versions because they are designed to protect against the original strain of COVID-19 and the Omicron variant, which is responsible for more than 99 percent of the COVID cases in Texas over the past month.
The boosters are a single dose that uses the same mRNA technology as the original Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, and they will be available in many of the same locations. The updated Pfizer booster is authorized for people at least 12 years old, and the Moderna booster is for people 18 and older. People can get the updated booster as long at it has been at least two months since they completed any primary COVID-19 vaccine series or gotten a previous booster. They should talk to their health care provider about the best timing for them.
Doses of the updated boosters are shipping to clinics, health departments, hospitals and pharmacies. People can use the vaccine finder at vaccines.gov to locate a provider with doses of the new boosters in stock starting next week.
About 47 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Texas since they first became available in late 2020. Eighteen million people have been fully vaccinated, and 7.4 million have gotten at least one previous booster.