With 90 counties in the state at an elevated level for COVID-19, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is urging all who are eligible to take advantage of the new bivalent booster shots that have been authorized by the CDC.
IDPH is reporting 26,127 new confirmed and probable cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Illinois, including 70 deaths since August 26, 2022.
“Once the updated booster shots become available next week, I urge everyone in Illinois who is eligible to take advantage of the opportunity to get fully protected before we enter the fall season,” said IDPH Director Dr. Sameer Vohra. “These new bivalent vaccines are designed to offer extra protection against the omicron variants which are now the dominant strain of the virus. Getting up to date now is especially important for those who are at risk of serious outcomes as the updated vaccines offer protection from hospitalization and even death.”
This week, the FDA granted emergency use authorization for two new bivalent booster vaccines that include an mRNA component of the original strain to provide an immune response that is broadly protective against COVID-19 and an added mRNA component in common between the omicron variant BA.4 and BA.5 lineages to provide better protection against COVID-19 caused by the omicron variant.
The Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine, Bivalent, is authorized for use as a single booster dose in individuals 18 years of age and older. The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, Bivalent, is authorized for use as a single booster dose in individuals 12 years of age and older.
IDPH expects to receive 580,000 doses of the new bivalent vaccines for distribution in the next week. This is in addition to 150,000 doses designated for the City of Chicago. The updated boosters will be available at pharmacies, hospitals, and other healthcare providers. The best way to locate a vaccine provider near you is to go to www.vaccines.gov and search for bivalent booster availability.