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We Need the Updated Bivalent COVID-19 Booster, Don’t We?



Terry Brenneman, MD
Terry Brenneman, MD

At its last meeting in April of this year the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) discussed safety data as well as plans to simplify COVID-19 immunization recommendations. Before the FDA withdrawal of emergency authorization for use of monovalent mRNA vaccines, there were 11 different products being produced. That number has been reduced to 5.

It is now recommended that anyone previously vaccinated with a monovalent vaccine get a single booster dose of a bivalent formulation. Bivalent vaccines have been available for persons over the age of 12 since September 2, 2022. So, how have Americans responded to the new recommendation that all get boosted with a bivalent vaccine?

Adults over the age of 65 years are at higher risk of hospitalization and death from SARS-CoV-2 infection and, as has historically been the case with influenza vaccines, uptake is highest in this age group.

Question 1. What percent of adults over age 65 had been boosted with a COVID-19 bivalent vaccine as of April 13, 2023?

(Point of reference: 94% of this age group got the primary series with the monovalent version.)

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