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Valley doctor encourages immunosuppressed, elderly to consider getting COVID-19 booster shot

8 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago Friday, October 08 2021 Oct 8, 2021 October 08, 2021 9:41 AM October 08, 2021 in News - Local

A new study was released showing that Pfizer vaccine effectiveness drops as early as 80 days after the vaccine and slows down thereafter.

The New England Journal of Medicine’s latest study determined that although everyone had a considerable decrease in protection, this was especially true for men, immunosuppressed people, and anyone 65 and up.

That's why Hidalgo County Health Authority Dr. Ivan Melendez says it's important to start thinking about the booster. 

“As time goes by, our immune system goes down and so we need to re-boot it up," Dr. Melendez said. "So, based on what we’re seeing not only in laboratory analysis-- where some people's immune system comes down, their antibodies come down--  also by those people being hospitalized that are fully vaccinated.”

Dr. Melendez also said that not everyone should necessarily get the booster just yet, as it is still being determined whether a booster is exactly what everyone needs. However, he says that a select group of people should definitely get it the first chance they get.

“If you believe that you’re at risk to transport or obtain the disease, or if you’re immunosuppressed, or if you’re above a certain age, certainly, certainly, you should consider getting that booster,” he said. 

On Tuesday, Johnson & Johnson requested approval from the FDA for a booster vaccine.

This news came as a top FDA official announced that new data strongly supports booster eligibility for everyone 18 and up.

The FDA has plans to discuss both the Johnson & Johnson and Moderna booster vaccines next week.

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