TWIN FALLS — Officials are working to reassure the public after some people have questioned the effectiveness of the vaccine since some people may need a booster shot.
“We’ve had a couple of questions from people asking, does this mean the vaccine is not holding up? That’s not the case," said Brianna Bodily, the spokesperson for the South Central Public Health District. "Booster doses are very common with vaccines, it’s just an extra "mphm" that we’re giving your body, or the vaccine is giving your body to fight the virus.”
What is slightly different about this booster shot than others, is that typically booster shots can apply to everyone. However, the COVID-19 booster is only geared towards a specific population rather than the general public.
“The booster dose is focused on individuals who are going to be bombarded by the COVID-19 virus or individuals who have a slightly suppressed immune system," said Bodily. "So, they’re not going to be able to create as many antibodies and be as protected as the average person.”
When Bodily mentions someone who is going to be "bombarded by COVID-19," she is referring to a person who is at an increased risk of exposure because of their jobs, such as a doctor or a nurse working in a hospital.
If someone is coming into contact with another person who has the virus every day, their body may be fighting off the disease so frequently they have lost antibodies and need this shot to keep help keep them safe.
For those who fall into this category and plan to receive their booster shot, there is a timeline to follow.
“You get your booster dose until at least six months have expired since you got your second dose." said Bodily A big part of that is so that you give your body a chance to build up all of the antibodies it can from those first two doses before you do the third dose.”
For anyone who is going to get a booster, the health district encourages you to go to the provider that administered both the first and second dose in you.
“Those individuals are likely offering the booster dose as well and already have your medical information on file, already have your insurance on file," said Bodily. "So they’re a great place to start.”
If that provider is not offering the booster shot, you can head to the South Central Public Health District's website where they also offer a list of other providers in the area.