With COVID-19 cases remaining high across Washington state, focused efforts are still underway to get more residents protected with the latest bivalent COVID booster.
Research shows these new boosters offer substantial protection against severe illness and hospitalizations1, but the numbers continue to lag despite persistent community transmission of the virus.
New figures from the Washington state Department of Health show that fewer than one-third of the eligible population has received a bivalent booster, despite widespread access.
Read: Who should get the COVID-19 booster and why?
“The updated COVID-19 vaccine boosters are proven to be both safe and effective for Washingtonians. These bivalent boosters offer the best defense against serious symptoms of the COVID-19 virus, and ensure all residents can live healthy lives,” said Dr. Drew Oliveria, the Washington Health Alliance’s executive director, and a board-certified family medicine physician.
Here’s what Washington residents need to know about the bivalent COVID-19 booster:
It’s safe and proven effective:
Millions of Washingtonians have received COVID vaccines without complications since the initial vaccine rollout more than two years ago. After initial review, the Food & Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approved these boosters as safe to administer to adults and children older than six months. This booster has been proven to decrease the likelihood of serious infections that require hospitalization.
Nearly everyone is eligible:
There are few limitations on who can receive the bivalent booster. According to the latest guidance, anyone six months or older can receive a bivalent booster. The latest guidelines recommend individuals get the bivalent booster two months after they finish the primary course of vaccine or two months after their most recent booster shot.5
It’s readily available:
In Washington state, residents have many options to receive the latest bivalent booster. And the availability of doses is no longer a concern. All major healthcare providers and pharmacies administer the booster vaccine. Local, regional, and state organizations continue to hold vaccine clinics to reach all populations. For information on where to get a bivalent booster, residents can visit: https://vaccinelocator.doh.wa.gov/
It will not cost you anything:
Vaccines and boosters continue to be provided at no cost to residents with health insurance. This includes those with private insurance, Apple Health Care, and Medicare. Uninsured individuals can still get free vaccines and boosters – federal programs still are in place to compensate providers so there is no out-of-pocket expense for the uninsured.
It benefits not just you, but the people around you:
Research continues to show that receiving a COVID-19 vaccine and proper booster shots limits the spread of the virus. Residents receiving a vaccine is still a top strategy to keep your family, friends, and neighbors safe from COVID-19.