Important update: Healthcare facilities
CDC has updated select ways to operate healthcare systems effectively in response to COVID-19 vaccination. Learn more
UPDATE
Given new evidence on the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant, CDC has updated the guidance for fully vaccinated people. CDC recommends universal indoor masking for all teachers, staff, students, and visitors to K-12 schools, regardless of vaccination status. Children should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with layered prevention strategies in place.
UPDATE
The White House announced that vaccines will be required for international travelers coming into the United States, with an effective date of November 8, 2021. For purposes of entry into the United States, vaccines accepted will include FDA approved or authorized and WHO Emergency Use Listing vaccines. More information is available here.
UPDATE
Travel requirements to enter the United States are changing, starting November 8, 2021. More information is available here.

COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shots

COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shots
New People age 18 years and older who received Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines may get a booster.

Everyone Ages 18 and Older Can Get a Booster Shot

IF YOU RECEIVED
Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna


You should get a booster if you are:

You may get a booster if you are:

  • Ages 18 years and older

When to get a booster:
At least 6 months after completing your primary COVID-19 vaccination series

Which booster should you get?
Any of the COVID-19 vaccines authorized in the United States

IF YOU RECEIVED
Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen


You should get a booster if you are:

When to get a booster:
At least 2 months after your shot.

Which booster should you get?
Any of the COVID-19 vaccines authorized in the United States can be used for the booster dose.

Choosing Your COVID-19 Booster Shot

You may choose which COVID-19 vaccine you receive as a booster shot. Some people may prefer the vaccine type that they originally received, and others may prefer to get a different booster. CDC’s recommendations now allow for this type of mix and match dosing for booster shots. 

Scheduling Your Booster Shot

If you need help scheduling your booster shot, contact the location that set up your previous appointmentIf you need to get your booster shot in a location different from where you received your previous shot, there are several ways you can find a vaccine provider. 

IF YOU RECEIVED

Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 Vaccines

Adults ages 50 years and older

People ages 50 years and older should get a booster shot. The risk of severe illness from COVID-19 increases with age and can also increase for adults of any age with underlying medical conditions.

Long-term care setting residents ages 18 years and older

Residents ages 18 years and older of long-term care settings should get a booster shot. Because residents in long-term care settings live closely together in group settings and are often older adults with underlying medical conditions, they are at increased risk of infection and severe illness from COVID-19. 

Other people who are age 18 years and older

People who are ages 18 years and older may  get a booster shot based on their individual risks and benefits. This recommendation may change in the future as more data become available. 

IF YOU RECEIVED

J&J/Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine

All people ages 18 years and older who received a J&J/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine at least 2 months ago should get a booster shot, for a total of two shots. A single dose of the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine has lower vaccine effectiveness compared to two doses. 

What to Expect during and after Your Booster Shot Appointment

  • Bring your CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record card to your booster shot appointment so your provider can fill in the information about your booster dose. If you did not receive a card at your first appointment, contact the vaccination site where you got your first shot or your state health department to find out how you can get a card. 
  • You may experience side effects after getting a COVID-19 vaccine. These are normal signs that your body is building protection against COVID-19. 
  • Use v-safe to tell CDC about any side effects. If you enter your booster shot in your v-safe account, the system will send you daily health check-ins. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Data Supporting Need for a Booster Shot

Studies show after getting vaccinated against COVID-19, protection against the virus and the ability to prevent infection with the Delta variant may decrease over time. 

Although COVID-19 vaccination for older adults remains effective in preventing severe disease, recent data suggest vaccination is less effective at preventing infection or milder illness with symptoms over time. 

  • Emerging evidence also shows that among healthcare and other frontline workers, vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19 infection is also decreasing over time. 
  • This lower effectiveness is likely due to the combination of decreasing protection as time passes since getting vaccinated, as well as the greater infectiousness of the Delta variant. 

Data from small clinical trials show that vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19 infection is waning after the primary series, but protection remains high against severe disease and hospitalization. Clinical trial data show a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine is effective in protecting against COVID-19, adding to other evidence demonstrating that a booster shot may result in increased effectiveness compared to primary vaccination.