Health Advice



Do you need a booster shot, pronto?

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

Sarah Hyland of "Modern Family" has had multiple kidney transplants. That means she's immunocompromised, because of the anti-rejection drugs she has to take and because her original condition strains her immune system.

When she got her COVID-19 vaccine in March, she declared, "HALLELUJAH! I AM FINALLY VACCINATED!!!!!" Now, she sounds like a candidate for a booster shot, since it's recommended for anyone who's moderately or severely immunocompromised. But many people don't know if their health challenges mean they should get a booster.

Here are the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's guidelines and definition of moderately to severely immunocompromised, plus why it's important to act now. (The rest of you will get booster shots soon -- around six to eight months after your initial vaccinations.)

1. Get a booster that's the same brand -- Moderna or Pfizer -- you got originally.

2. Wait at least 28 days after your second injection before getting a booster.

3. You qualify as immunocompromised if:


-- You've been receiving cancer treatment for a solid or blood cancer.

-- Have had an organ transplant and are taking immune-suppressing medication.

-- Have received a stem cell transplant within the past two years.

-- You are diagnosed with moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency.


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(c) 2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.



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