- Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, New Mexico, Vermont and West Virginia are promoting a wider rollout of boosters for any fully vaccinated adult.
- New York and Rhode Island are asking for a boost to adults in areas with high transmission, while New Jersey and Minnesota plan to expand eligibility in the coming days.
- California is also asking medical providers not to turn away any adult who requests a booster.
State officials from California to Maine are allowing their adult residents to receive COVID-19 vaccine boosters, drawing guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on reserving shots for the elderly and other high-risk groups.
Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, New Mexico, Vermont and West Virginia are promoting a wider rollout of boosters for any fully vaccinated adult. New York and Rhode Island are asking to promote adults in high-risk areas, while New Jersey and Minnesota plan to expand eligibility in the coming days. California is also asking medical providers not to turn away any adult who requests a booster.
The CDC approved a third dose last month for some Pfizer and Moderna recipients, at least six months after completing their first two shots. This includes adults 65 years of age and older, adults with medical conditions known to cause complications of COVID, anyone 18 years of age or older working or living in a group setting and all Adult front-line workers are experiencing workplace risks. Boosters are also available for all adult Johnson & Johnson recipients for at least two months after being vaccinated.
“The data indicates that the effectiveness of the vaccine wears off over time, and so is the reason for boosters,” Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson said at a briefing Monday. “And we want to make sure everyone who is 18 and older is eligible and encouraged to get a booster.”
As of Thursday, more than 247,000 Arkansas residents have received an additional dose, according to the state’s online COVID-19 dashboard. Arkansas Department of Health spokesman Danielle McNeill told CNBC in an email Tuesday that “the great majority of adults in Arkansas” were considered high risk by the CDC even before Hutchinson issued its recommendation.
West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice on Monday called on all adults in the state to get their boosters, saying fully vaccinated residents would be “too stupid” not to register for the supplemental shot. The state Department of Health and Human Resources reported Thursday that more than 53,400 residents of West Virginia have received their booster doses.
“I’m pretty confident that if you’re 18, you can get your booster shot,” Justice said in a press briefing on Monday.
The governors of Colorado and New Mexico issued executive orders last week to formalize booster access for their entire adult populations. More than 292,700 eligible individuals in New Mexico and about 781,400 in Colorado have received boosters, according to the latest data compiled by both states.
“The case numbers are significant, the prevalence rate is very high, and the delta version is far more transmissible than previous versions,” New Mexico’s acting health secretary, Dr. David Schreuz, said in a statement on November 12. “In addition, our hospitals are well beyond capacity, and many have declared crisis standards of care.”
The Department of Health and Human Services reported that about 93% of New Mexico’s intensive care beds were occupied as of Thursday, with COVID patients accounting for 40% of all ICU beds. About 82% of Colorado’s ICU beds were dedicated to 38% of virus patients, HHS calculated.
Kentucky approved boosters for fully vaccinated adults with an executive order on Wednesday, while Connecticut, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts and Vermont all expanded their booster programs this week without resorting to an official order. did.
New York and Rhode Island aren’t allowing all their residents 18 and older to foster, but they face an increased risk of contracting COVID by giving anyone with one more shot to protect themselves. are. But New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi instructed doctors and pharmacists to give the booster to any adult who asks for it.
“We continue to have high transmission rates, winter is coming, our cases have gone up,” Dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott, director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, told a briefing on Tuesday. “Everyone who is 18 and older is at greater risk of exposure, and so we want the message to go out that you can go ahead and get your booster shot.”
California’s Department of Public Health also issued new guidance on November 9, asking medical providers to give a booster to any adult it determines they need further protection against the virus.
Officials in Minnesota and New Jersey added this week that they plan to simplify their booster criteria soon. The push to provide access to additional doses to wider sections of the general population comes as Pfizer and Moderna submit applications to the Food and Drug Administration to phase out their boosters for Americans age 18 and older.
The FDA may authorize Pfizer’s boosters for all adults this week. With final approval from the CDC, fully vaccinated adults can start getting those shots before Thanksgiving.
“We are communicating with our federal partners that we are preparing to proceed independently this week if there is no action at the federal level,” Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said at a COVID briefing on Tuesday. “