Health experts urge latest COVID-19 booster shot

A survey presented to the CDC shows vaccination rates for the latest COVID-19 booster are in the single digits. Health experts are urging people to get the shot.

NORFOLK, Virginia — A national survey presented Thursday to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows vaccination rates for the latest COVID-19 booster are in the single digits.

The survey shows just 2% of children and 7% of adults have gotten the shot. 

With the colder months approaching, health experts are urging people to get the vaccine. Hampton Roads cardiologist Dr. Keith Newby said vaccine fatigue is partly to blame for the low numbers.

“I mean, it’s something about getting that needle, that a lot of people shy away from,” Dr. Newby said. 

Newby said as the initial fear of the virus has dissipated, fewer and fewer people are heading to the clinic. However, he said COVID-19 isn’t over.

“Even though you may get it and you may not die or have some major complication initially, but the long-term ramifications: excess shortness of breath, brain fog, strokes,” Dr. Newby explained. 

Newby urges getting the latest booster as the virus continues to mutate.

“When you get updated COVID vaccinations, it’s designed to deal with those mutations,” he said. 

Dr. Newby explained while you may still catch COVID-19 after getting the vaccine, the severity of the infection is much lower. He also said the vaccines aren’t just to protect yourself; they also protect those around you.

“If you have a family member who is immunocompromised, or if you have an elderly mother or father who is at home and you bring COVID home, they could get it and die,” he said. 

When it comes to the flu vaccines, Newby said not to take that lightly either. He urges getting both vaccines as soon as possible.

“Getting a second of discomfort for a long-term gain, I think it’s worth it,” he said. 

Dr. Newby said while you can get the flu and COVID-19 vaccines together, he recommends waiting a week or two in between shots. That way, in the rare chance you have a adverse reaction, you can pinpoint the cause. 

For more information on the latest booster, click here. 

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