09/14/22 Health Advisory: COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Providers

hands in blue medical gloves holding a syringe and drawing from a vile
  • FDA removed its authorization of current (monovalent) Moderna and Pfizer mRNA vaccines for use as booster doses in people 12 years or older.
    • As of Aug. 31, you may no longer give current (monovalent) Moderna and Pfizer vaccines as booster doses to people 12 years or older.
      • Reschedule existing booster dose appointments for people 12 years or older for when bivalent vaccine booster doses are available.
    • You can still give current (monovalent) Moderna and Pfizer vaccines:
      • As booster doses to children 5–11 years old.
      • As a primary series to people 6 months or older.
    • Retain your current vaccine supply and use the vaccine marketplace to shift primary series doses to areas of need.
  • If possible, it is safe and recommended to administer the bivalent COVID-19 booster at the same time as the seasonal influenza vaccine, given in separate arms.   
  • Local healthcare provider offices, local pharmacies, WCHD pop-up vaccine clinics are starting to receive the boosters.
  • On Sept. 1, 2022, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) endorsed Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP’s) recommendation of Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine bivalent booster doses.
    • Bivalent booster doses enhance immunity against the ancestral coronavirus strain and protect against newer Omicron variants that account for most current cases.
    • Bivalent booster doses provide optimal protection and address waning vaccine effectiveness over time.
  • On Sept. 3, 2022, Western States Scientific Safety Review workgroup concurred with ACIP’s recommendation of bivalent booster doses for people who completed a primary series of COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Washington State Department of Health’s (DOH’s) bivalent booster dose eligibility and recommendations:
    • To receive a bivalent booster dose, a person must first complete a primary series of Pfizer, Moderna, Novavax or Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.
    • Pfizer bivalent booster doses are authorized for people 12 years or older, at least 2 months after their most recent dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
    • Moderna bivalent booster doses are authorized for people 18 years or older, at least 2 months after their most recent dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
    • Children 5–11 years old should continue to receive Pfizer monovalent booster doses, at least 5 months after completing their primary series.
    • Booster doses are not authorized for children 6 months–4 years old.
    • Number of booster doses previously received does not affect bivalent booster dose eligibility.
  • We expect DOH to approve statewide standing orders for bivalent booster doses soon. Keep your eye out for notification from DOH.
  • DOH anticipates demand for bivalent booster doses will be greater than supply. Focus early administration on:
    • Preventing severe illness.
    • Minimizing spread of disease.
      • People who live in multigenerational households.
      • People who live or work with people at risk of severe illness.
      • People who live or work in congregate settings.
      • People at higher risk for exposure in their workplace.
    • Protecting communities COVID-19 disproportionately impacts. See health equity strategies from CDC and DOH.
      • Agricultural workers.
      • American Indian.
      • Alaska Native.
      • Asian.
      • Black or African American.
      • Latinx.
      • LGBTQ+.
      • Native Hawaiian.
      • Pacific Islander.
      • People living homeless.
      • People with disabilities.
      • People with limited English proficiency.
      • Slavic or former Soviet Union communities.
  • Food and Drug Administration (FDA) removed its authorization of monovalent mRNA COVID-19 vaccines for booster doses for people 12 years or older.
  • Wondering what “up-to-date” vaccine status means, now that bivalent booster doses are added to the COVID-19 vaccine schedule?
    • You are up-to-date on COVID-19 vaccine when you have completed a primary series and received the most recent booster dose CDC recommends for you.
    • CDC recommends everyone 12 years or older get a bivalent booster dose at least 2 months after their last dose of COVID-19 vaccine, whether it was a primary series or previous booster dose.
  • Providers who ordered bivalent booster doses will or have received their initial allocation this week. Weekly allocations will follow in upcoming weeks, building the state’s inventory levels over time.
    • If you paused ordering COVID-19 vaccine, we recommend you order bivalent booster doses when they become more available. 

More resources

Questions?
  • Contact Whatcom County Health Department
    • 360-778-6100 Main Call Line – available M-F 8:30am to 4:30pm
    • 360-715-2588 Afterhours Answering Service – available after 4:30pm and weekends
    • 360-778-6150 Communicable Disease Report Line – 24 hours a day 7 days a week
    • 360-778-6103 Confidential Communicable Disease Fax – 24 hours a day 7 days a week
    • 509 Girard Street, Bellingham WA 98225