COVID-19 Vaccines Update

Updated CDC Recommendations

CDC Expands Booster Shot Eligibility and Strengthens Recommendations for 12-17 Year Olds

On January 5, 2022, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) endorsed the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP) recommendation to expand eligibility of booster doses to those 12 to 15 years old. CDC now recommends that adolescents age 12 to 17 years old should receive a booster shot 5 months after their initial Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination series.

Data show that COVID-19 boosters help to broaden and strengthen protection against Omicron and other SARS-CoV-2 variants. ACIP reviewed the available safety data following the administration of over 25 million vaccine doses in adolescents; COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective.

At this time, only the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is authorized and recommended for adolescents aged 12-17.

Click here to read the CDC Media Statement.

CDC Recommends Pfizer Booster at 5 Months, Additional Primary Dose for Certain Immunocompromised Children

On January 4, 2022, the CDC updated its recommendation for when many people can receive a booster shot, shortening the interval from 6 months to 5 months for people who received the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine. This means that people can now receive a mRNA booster shot 5 months after completing their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series. The booster interval recommendation for people who received the J&J vaccine (2 months) or the Moderna vaccine (6 months), has not changed.

Additionally, consistent with its prior recommendation for adults, CDC recommended that moderately or severely immunocompromised 5–11-year-olds receive an additional primary dose of vaccine 28 days after their second shot. At this time, only the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is authorized and recommended for children aged 5-11.

Click here to read the CDC Media Statement.
Resource Spotlight

CDC COVID-19 Vaccines
For Clinicians
  • COVID-19 ACIP Vaccine Recommendations webpage
  • Interim Clinical Considerations for Use of COVID-19 Vaccines Currently Approved or Authorized in the United States webpage
  • U.S. COVID-19 Vaccine Product Information webpage
  • Guidance for Planning Vaccination Clinics Held at Satellite, Temporary, or Off-Site Locations webpage
For Parents/Patients
  • Stay Up to Date with Your Vaccines webpage
  • COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shots webpage

American Academy of Pediatrics
  • COVID-19 Vaccine for Children webpage

MDPH COVID-19 Bulletins
Provider Education

Friday, January 14 and 21, 2022, 12:00-1:30 PM ET
Friday, February 11, 2022, 12:00-1:30 PM ET
MDPH and PNQIN (Perinatal Neonatal Quality Improvement Network) 
Communication/Motivational Interviewing Skills to Address Vaccine Hesitancy Training
This training opportunity will be sponsored by the MDPH and PNQIN (Perinatal Neonatal Quality Improvement Network) in partnership with Center for Integrated Primary Care at UMass Chan Medical School as a part of PNQIN's Perinatal COVID-19 Vaccine Initiative. This training is designed to improve the counseling skills of Massachusetts clinicians for discussing COVID-19 vaccination with pregnant and postpartum people, parents and caregivers of young children, and families. The training also will focus on addressing vaccine hesitancy and reducing racial disparities in rates of COVID-19 vaccination. The one-session training will be held on three dates and CE credits will be available for Massachusetts clinicians.
Register here (January 14, 2022, 12:00-1:30 PM ET)
Register here (January 21, 2022, 12:00-1:30 PM ET)
Register here (February 11, 2022, 12:00-1:30 PM ET)

CDC Interactive COVID-19 Vaccine Conversations Module for Healthcare Professionals: Talking with Patients About COVID-19 Vaccine
This interactive tool has been developed by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in partnership with the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs to assist healthcare professionals in building confidence in COVID-19 vaccination among their patients. The interactive module includes five COVID-19 vaccine conversations in practice case scenarios. Additional resources are available as well.
Click here for more information.
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