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.

Stay Up to Date with COVID-19 Vaccines Including Boosters

Stay Up to Date with COVID-19 Vaccines Including Boosters
Updated Sept. 8, 2022

What You Need to Know

  • CDC recommends everyone stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccination, including all primary series doses and boosters for their age group:
    • People ages 6 months through 4 years should get all COVID-19 primary series doses.
    • People ages 5 years and older should get all primary series doses, and the booster dose recommended for them by CDC, if eligible.
      • People ages 5 years to 11 years are currently recommended to get the original (monovalent) booster.
      • People ages 12 years and older are recommended to receive one updated Pfizer or Moderna (bivalent) booster.
        • This includes people who have received all primary series doses and people who have previously received one or more original (monovalent) boosters.
        • At this time, people aged 12 years to 17 years can only receive the updated Pfizer bivalent booster.
  • Getting a COVID-19 vaccine after you recover from COVID-19 infection provides added protection against COVID-19.
  • People who are moderately or severely immunocompromised have different recommendations for COVID-19 vaccines, including boosters.
  • COVID-19 vaccine and booster recommendations may be updated as CDC continues to monitor the latest data.

About COVID-19 Vaccines

COVID-19 vaccines available in the United States are effective at protecting people from getting seriously ill, being hospitalized, and dying. As with other diseases, you are protected best from COVID-19 when you stay up to date with the recommended vaccines, including recommended boosters.

Four COVID-19 vaccines are approved or authorized in the United States to prevent COVID-19: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, Novavax, and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen (J&J/Janssen). It’s recommended that the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 vaccine only be considered in some situations.

Updated COVID-19 boosters can both help restore protection that has decreased since previous vaccination, and provide broader protection against newer variants. The updated, or bivalent boosters, target the most recent Omicron subvariants, BA.4 and BA.5, that are more contagious and more resistant than earlier strains of Omicron.

When Are You Up to Date?

You are up to date with your COVID-19 vaccines if you have completed a COVID-19 vaccine primary series and received the most recent booster dose recommended for you by CDC.

Vaccine recommendations are based on your age, the vaccine you first received, and time since last dose. People who are moderately or severely immunocompromised have different recommendations for COVID-19 vaccines.

Children and teens ages 6 months–17 years

COVID-19 vaccine dosage is based on age on the day of vaccination, not on size or weight. Children get a smaller dose of COVID-19 vaccine than teens and adults based on the age group they belong to.

Adults ages 18 years and older

1 Talk to your healthcare or vaccine provider about the timing for the 2nd dose in your primary series.

  • People ages 6 months through 64 yearsand especially males ages 12 through 39 years, may consider getting the 2nd primary dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) 8 weeks after the 1st dose.
    • A longer time between the 1st and 2nd primary doses may increase how much protection the vaccines offer, and further minimize the rare risk of myocarditis and pericarditis.
  • Anyone wanting protection due to high levels of community transmission, people ages 65 years and older, or people who are more likely to get very sick from COVID-19, should get the second dose of:
    • Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine 3 weeks (or 21 days) after the first dose.
    • Moderna COVID-19 vaccine 4 weeks (or 28 days) after the first dose.
    • Novavax COVID-19 vaccine 3 weeks (or 21 days) after the first dose.

2 If you have completed your primary series, but are not yet eligible for a booster, you are also considered up to date.

Mixing COVID-19 Vaccine Products

Primary series

CDC does not recommend mixing products for your primary series doses. If you received Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, or Novavax for the first dose of your primary series, you should get the same product for all following primary series doses.

Boosters

  • People ages 18 years and older may get a different product for a booster than they got for their primary series, as long as it is Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna.
  • Teens ages 12-17 years may get a different product for a booster than they got for their primary series, as long as it is Pfizer-BioNTech.
  • Children ages 5 through 11 years who got a Pfizer-BioNTech primary series must also get Pfizer-BioNTech for a booster.
  • People ages 12 years and older may only get the updated (bivalent) mRNA (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) booster. They can no longer get an original (monovalent) mRNA booster.
  • Novavax is not authorized for use as a booster dose at this time.
Learn about Getting Your Vaccine
  • Do you need to wait to get vaccinated after infection or getting treatment?
  • How can you prepare?
  • What can you expect during and after your vaccination?

Getting Your COVID-19 Vaccine

Vaccination Outside the United States

Specific recommendations for people vaccinated outside of the United States depend on whether:

  • The vaccine(s) received are accepted in the United States
  • The primary series was completed and, if eligible, a booster dose was received

These recommendations apply only to people who are not moderately or severely immunocompromised.

Resources