The Food and Drug Administration announced on Tuesday that it has approved the use of Moderna and Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines as a booster dose for certain individuals.

The agency amended the emergency use authorization of the vaccines to allow for the booster dose, joining the Pfizer vaccine that was approved for a booster dose in late September.

Under the new authorization, a half-dose of the Moderna vaccine can be given to individuals at least 6 months after completing their two-dose vaccination if they are 65 years-or older; are between the ages of 18 and 64 years old and at high risk of severe Covid-19; or have frequent exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

A Pfizer booster dose can be given 6 months after completing the two-dose vaccination for individuals between the ages of 18 and 64 years old that have frequent exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The booster dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is open to anyone 18-years-and-older at least 2 months after completing their one-dose vaccination.

In a statement, acting FDA commissioner Janet Woodcock stressed the importance of vaccinations.

“As the pandemic continues to impact the country, science has shown that vaccination continues to be the safest and most effective way to prevent COVID-19, including the most serious consequences of the disease, such as hospitalization and death,” Woodcock said. “The available data suggest waning immunity in some populations who are fully vaccinated. The availability of these authorized boosters is important for continued protection against COVID-19 disease.”

The FDA also announced that a single booster dose of any of the COVID-19 vaccines can be given as a heterologous or “mix and match” booster dose.

Individuals can take any of the vaccines as a booster with eligibility and dosing following each of the vaccine’s authorization requirements.

For more information visit the FDA website at www.fda.gov.

• Contact the Tracy Press at tpnews@tracypress.com or 835-3030.

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