With state approval of booster doses for Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines, North Central Public Health District is ready to vaccinate large numbers of people in the coming weeks and months.
NCPHD has reopened its vaccination clinics at the Fort Dalles Readiness Center, and eight clinics are planned through mid-December. People can book their own appointment by visiting https://www.ncphd.org/book- vaccine or calling the health district at 541-506-2600, or Mid-Columbia Senior Center at 541-296-4788.
NCPHD can vaccinate 300 people per clinic. “We are quickly increasing capacity and days to accommodate an expected spike in demand for boosters,” said Martha McInnes, RN, who oversees the clinic operation.
“We believe that we will be able to accommodate everybody who wants boosters, but we do ask people to be patient as this rolls out and be assured that you are still very well protected even if you don’t have the booster — that’s an important piece to remember,” McInnes said.
Gift cards will not be available for those getting boosters. Moderna booster doses are now available to:
· Those 65 and older;
· anyone 18 and older living in a long term care facility;
· People 18 and older with underlying medical conditions or increased risk of social inequalities
· anyone 18-49 at risk for COVID because of occupational or institutional setting
The booster dose is half the original dose, and is available to people six months after their second dose.
Johnson & Johnson booster doses are available to everyone who got the vaccine. A booster dose can be given two months after the first dose of Johnson & Johnson.
Booster doses for those who got the Pfizer vaccine were approved in September.
Also newly approved is the ability to “mix and match” booster doses. Any of the three vaccines can be used as a booster dose, regardless of which vaccines were initially received.
A booster study found that the two mRNA vaccines, Pfizer and Moderna, produced more antibodies when the other vaccine was given, such as Pfizer following Moderna, or Moderna following Pfizer.
It also found that a second dose of Johnson & Johnson vaccine to those who initially got Johnson & Johnson provided the weakest protection. A second dose of Johnson provided a four-fold increase in antibodies in 15 days, while a Moderna second dose provided a 76-fold increase. Pfizer provided a 35-fold increase.
The clinic dates and times are:
· Thursday, Oct. 28, noon to 6 p.m.
· Wednesday, Nov. 3, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
· Thursday, Nov. 4, noon to 6 p.m.
· Wednesday, Nov. 10, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
· Friday, Nov. 12, noon to 6 p.m.
· Thursday, Nov. 18, noon to 6 p.m.
· Thursday, Dec. 9, noon to 6 p.m.
· Thursday, Dec. 16, noon to 6 p.m.
(For more information, please visit COVID-19 Vaccine in Oregon, contact North Central Public Health District at (541) 506-2600, visit us on the web at www.ncphd.org or find us on Facebook.)