When can you get a Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine booster shot?


RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – When can I get a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot? It’s a question more and more people have asked as Pfizer moves along with it’s booster authorizations.

A third-party FDA advisory panel voted in favor of boosters for Johnson & Johnson as well as Moderna this week. Their green light for boosters are just getting the ball rolling.

“It shows just how much progress we’ve made that we can even turn the little knob. Not just the big knobs, but turn the little knobs to make things even better,” said Dr. David Wohl, an infectious disease expert with the UNC School of Medicine.

The next step will be for the FDA director to sign off for that agency. They usually go along with what the advisory panel recommends. We’ll see a repeat of this next week when a CDC panel takes up the issue.

The director of the CDC also gets final say and typically agrees with the panel. This means we could see booster expansions by the end of next week.

“Some people are already doing that, you know, sort of off-script. I think that the science really does indicate that’s the best way to go,” said Wohl.

Wohl said the debate isn’t about safety but strategy.

“We’re talking about what’s the most effective. Safety here is not really the issue. These are extremely, I mean, it’s almost amazing how safe these vaccines are,” said Wohl.

The strategies are different. Moderna is moving forward on a half-dose booster for people most at risk for exposure and infection after so months. Johnson & Johnson would be the same shot for anyone over 18 but the FDA panel did not specify a timeline.

“As science is evolving and we’re learning more people are bringing that to the public and saying, ‘See, see what we learned.’ Now we could apply it, so I think this is really just fantastic,” Wohl said.

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