LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — An extra layer of protection against COVID-19 is now being offered for thousands of patients in Southern Nevada, with booster shots of the Pfizer vaccine available for the first time Tuesday.
The shots are first available to those 65 and older or those in long-term care centers, traditionally two of the highest risk groups for serious cases of COVID-19.
Those under 65 with underlying health conditions are also eligible. People in the 18-49 age group with underlying conditions are advised to talk to a doctor first.
Patients do not need an appointment for a booster. They can walk into any clinic provided by the Southern Nevada Health District.
In order to get the Pfizer booster shot, it must be at least six months since your second Pfizer COVID shot.
The Health District reminds patients there is a difference between a third shot and a booster, which has to do with timing. A third shot should be given to immunocompromised individuals 28 days after a second shot. A booster, however, is available as a supplement months after the original doses.
“Those additional doses are for those people whose immune systems don’t work very well,” said Joann Rupiper, chief administrative nurse for Southern Nevada Health District.
Esperanza Gomez is in remission from breast cancer. She got her booster shot as soon as it was available.
“I don’t want to get sick,” said Gomez. “I’m still fighting with my cancer one more year, so what if I got COVID if I didn’t get the booster? Maybe I don’t need it but it doesn’t hurt me if I got it.”
Gomez said the process was quick and simple.