Booster shots now available for all Kansas seniors

Everyone age 65 and older is encouraged to beef up their coverage against COVID-19


State News

October 25, 2021 - 6:52 AM

KDHE secretary Lee Norman and Gov. Laura Kelly urge Kansans to get vaccinated. Photo by (SHERMAN SMITH/KANSAS REFLECTOR)

TOPEKA — Kansas officials said Friday the state is adopting federal guidelines for newly approved booster shots of COVID-19 vaccines.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention late Thursday authorized booster shots made by Moderna and Johnson and Johnson, along with a mix-and-match approach. The agency already had signed off on booster shots of the Pfizer vaccine.

“Starting today, over 2,000 COVID-19 vaccine providers across Kansas stand ready to provide a free booster dose for Moderna, Pfizer or Johnson and Johnson vaccine to anyone who is eligible,” said Lee Norman, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. “But this isn’t just a question of access. In every community in our state, we need to be talking to our family, our friends, and our neighbors about the need to get this safe and effective vaccine.”

CDC data shows 64.7% of Kansas adults are fully vaccinated, below the national average of 68.8%.

Booster shots are available for fully vaccinated adults six months after receiving a second injection of Moderna or Pfizer, or two months after the single jab of Johnson and Johnson. Under the new guidelines, the booster shot can be from a different manufacturer than the initial vaccine.

The CDC recommends booster shots for those who are 65 and older, regardless of medical condition; adult residents of long-term care settings, adults with underlying medical conditions that make them vulnerable to severe illness; and adults who are at high risk for infection because of their occupational or institutional setting.

“The COVID-19 vaccine is free, safe, effective, and the best way to keep our communities protected from this virus,” said Gov. Laura Kelly.

KDHE on Friday reported 26 new deaths from COVID-19 since Wednesday, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 6,211. The agency has documented more than 428,000 infections.