Booster Shots and the Omicron Variant

Image via Society for Human Resource Management

Image via Society for Human Resource Management

Sarina Nayak, Staff Writer

With the new Omicron variant creating a dark forecast for the pandemic, many individuals are reconsidering the COVID booster shot. Although there is little information regarding the new Coronavirus variant, scientists do believe that, at the very least, a higher administration rate of the booster shot can help slow down the Omicron variant until more research is done.

As of December 1, there have been 41.86 million booster shots administered in the US. And in Virginia, as of December 2, 1,296,503 people have received the booster shot. That is about 23.3% of the fully vaccinated individuals in Virginia.

Some vaccine companies might increase the size of the booster dose in order to account for potential new variants. For example, according to NPR, Moderna is considering doubling their booster dose from 50 to 100 micrograms. Other companies, like Pfi zer, are considering creating a new vaccine just for the variant.

The Omicron variant has already been reported in 16 states around the United States. In South Africa, the new variant initiated an extreme increase in COVID cases. Scientists believe that in the United States, the new variant might spread just as quickly. 

The President is strongly urging Americans to get the booster vaccine. The White House has encouraged employers to grant paid days off to those employees who receive the booster shot in order to alleviate some of the stress caused by vaccine side effects. “The best protection against this new variant or any of the variants out there, the ones we’ve been dealing with already, is getting fully vaccinated and getting a booster shot,” President Biden announced recently.

Although there is little knowledge about the new Coronavirus variants, President Biden, vaccine manufacturers, and scientists agree that getting vaccinated and receiving booster shots will help us all stay safe.