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Epidemiologist and professor Amira Ross answers frequently asked questions about the latest response to COVID.

In the United States, a new vaccine against COVID-19 has been approved and is recommended for people 12 years of age and older. This new enhancer, called a “bivalent” enhancer, was created to fight the original strain of COVID and to protect against the latest omicron variants (BA.4 and BA.5).

Epidemiologist and George Mason University professor Dr. Amira Ross specializes in infectious diseases and answers to frequently asked questions about the new COVID-19 response.

Who should get the new COVID-19 booster?

Eligible individuals aged 12 and over are advised to get a new bivalent booster. Compliance is determined at least 2 months after the last booster dose or from the initial series. The FDA has approved two new accelerators, one from Moderna and one from Pfizer. Visit the Centers for Disease Control website to see if you’re eligible.

The numbers are going down and it seems like fewer people are getting COVID, so why would I get a new booster?

Disease modelers predict a surge in cases this fall and winter, in part because we’re moving into colder months when we’ll be indoors more and exposed to more viruses. In addition, many people lose immunity against the virus. People were vaccinated or vaccinated many months ago, and many in the spring or summer. This means that they will soon be at risk of (re)infection. Getting a new booster can help reduce your chances of getting infected and greatly reduce your chances of getting a serious infection if you do.

Another important note: we are significantly underestimating cases. Many of us use home kits and we don’t report the results to health authorities.

Is now a good time to get a promotion?

If you are eligible, yes. Now is a good time to consider getting a new amp. We hear reports of children getting infected at school and infecting their families. We are likely to see more cases in the coming weeks. Individuals who qualify and receive the new booster can expect to have a lower chance of contracting COVID-19, and if they do, they are likely to have a very mild case and a shorter duration of illness. This will reduce the chance of spreading the virus to others.

How soon after infection can I get a new booster?

CDC general guidelines recommend waiting at least 3 months from the date onset of symptoms or a positive test. We can expect the CDC and the White House to release booster-related guidance on the matter in the coming weeks.

Why don’t we know more about the currently prevalent variant of COVID-19?

The evidence, although preliminary, suggests that the currently prevalent BA.5 variant is the most immune evasive we have dealt with to date. Individuals become infected with this variant at a higher rate compared to previously common variants. In addition, we observe re-infection of part of the population within 2 months after infection. Since BA.5 became dominant over the summer, there’s still a lot we don’t know.

Evidence suggests that, in general, among healthy people, rates of serious illness, hospitalizations, and deaths remain significantly lower after infection with option.

How do we handle this moving forward?

First, if you qualify for a new one acceleratorconsider getting.

Next, try to stay home if you have symptoms, even if the rapid test is negative. We want to avoid infecting other people, especially people with weakened immune systems or the elderly.

If you test positive, isolate yourself at home as much as possible. The CDC has updated its guidelines to reduce the length of isolation and quarantine. Once you’ve come out of isolation, continue to wear a mask when you’re around others to further protect them.

The good news is that most healthy adults are not very sick. However, we want to keep in mind that there are many immunocompromised people in our community who are at risk a serious illness they must become infected.

What you need to know about bivalent boosters for COVID-19

Citation: What you need to know about the new COVID booster (2022, September 19) Retrieved September 19, 2022, from

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