PRESS RELEASE

City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

8/18/2021
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # 081821-2
Subject:
Official Statement by City of Long Beach Health and Human Services Department Regarding COVID-19 Booster Shots
Contact:
City of Long Beach Joint Information Center
562.570.NEWS
jic@longbeach.gov





The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) today announced that it is recommending a booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine for those who have received Pfizer or Moderna vaccines more than eight months ago. The vaccines have proven to be effective, even against the widely circulating Delta variant, but the protection decreases over time and federal health officials said a booster shot could be needed to prolong the vaccine’s longevity.

HHS officials said they plan to begin distributing booster shots the week of September 20, starting with individuals who had their second dose eight months ago. Individuals who were fully vaccinated earliest in the vaccination rollout, including many health care providers, nursing home residents and other seniors, will likely be the first ones eligible for a booster. 

In Long Beach, the top priority of the Department of Health and Human Services (Health Department) remains staying ahead of the virus and protecting our community from the spread of COVID-19. The best tool we have to keep the community healthy during this pandemic is the vaccine, and the Health Department is preparing to offer ample opportunities to get free booster shots when they become available.

Currently, third doses are available in Long Beach for people who are moderate to severely immunocompromised. Studies indicate some immunocompromised people do not always build the same level of immunity after vaccination as non-immunocompromised people do and may benefit from an additional dose 28 days or more after their second doses to ensure adequate protection against COVID-19. 

The plan to offer booster shots starting this fall is subject to U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval. The FDA is conducting an independent evaluation and determination of the safety and effectiveness of a third dose of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) will be issuing booster dose recommendations based on a thorough review of the evidence. 

People who received the Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine also will likely need a booster shot, but that is still being determined.

The City of Long Beach emphasizes the ongoing urgency of everyone to get vaccinated, and of each person who received Pfizer or Moderna vaccines to get both doses. Nearly all cases of severe disease, hospitalization and death from COVID-19 continue to occur among those not yet fully vaccinated. 

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