CDC expands booster rollout, OKs mixing shots

WASHINGTON (AP) – Federal health officials say millions more Americans can get a COVID-19 booster and choose a different vaccine for that next shot.

Certain people who received Pfizer vaccinations months ago already are eligible for a booster. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday said specific Moderna and Johnson & Johnson recipients should qualify, too.

People who got Pfizer or Moderna are booster-eligible if they are:

  • 65 or older
  • 18+ and live in a long-term care setting
  • 18+ and have underlying health conditions
  • 18+ who work or live in high-risk settings

They should also be six months out from the initial doses.

Everyone over 18 who got the Johnson & Johnson shot more than two months ago are encouraged to get a booster. Nearly 15 million people have gotten that shot, according to the CDC.

And in a bigger change, the agency is allowing the flexibility of “mixing and matching” that extra dose.

The Food and Drug Administration had already authorized such an expansion of the nation’s booster campaign on Wednesday, and it was also endorsed Thursday by a CDC advisory panel.