A vaccine being administered

Vaccines will continue to be distributed at Redfern Health Center, along with booster clinic coming soon.

Redfern Health Center will be adding a Booster Clinic alongside its Vaccine Clinic. Although the university is not requiring COVID-19 vaccines or the booster shot, they are highly recommending them to students, faculty and staff.

The idea of a booster shot is not a new concept since many individuals receive a booster for other illnesses every year without realizing it. When COVID-19 vaccines were first introduced, scientists did acknowledge that a booster shot would be needed in the near future.

“People get confused — or they think something is wrong — when guidance changes with COVID-19, but we have to remember that we are learning about this as we go,” said Albert Shaw, Yale Medicine infectious diseases expert. Receiving a booster does not mean the vaccine is not working. It simply means that you will continue to be protected against the virus and possibly any new variants.

A booster shot is usually a replica of the initial vaccine, but it can be adjusted. In the case of COVID-19 it can be adjusted to target specific variants. “The current vaccines are still effective against the variants we are now seeing,” said Shaw. If the virus keeps evolving, the booster can tackle the more deadly symptoms.

The COVID-19 booster shot is only given to an individual who has completed their vaccination series and whose protection has worn off over time. This is different than an additional dose which is administered to individuals with compromised immune systems. The additional dose is meant for immunocompromised individuals to have an improved response to their vaccine series they have received.

The CDC recommends receiving a COVID-19 booster if an individual is:

  • 18 or older and received the Janssen/Johnson&Johnson vaccine at least two months ago.

  • 18 or older and has received both doses of the Moderna vaccine at least six months ago.

  • 16 or older and has received both doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at least five months ago.

Redfern staff are hoping there will be an incentive to motivate students, faculty and staff to receive the booster shot. There are no conversations on whether another incentive program will be launched for the booster shot, according to Joe Galbraith, university spokesperson. Appointments can be made online for free through VaxClinic.

Appointments can also be made by calling Redfern Pharmacy at 864-656-3562. Although it is not mandatory, it is highly advised to upload any COVID-19 vaccinations and/or booster records to the COVID-19 Vaccine Record Upload Tool.

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