Pending approval, Richmond ready to give all three boosters, offer mixing-and-matching

Coronavirus

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The mixing and matching of COVID-19 vaccines will likely be a reality any day now. The FDA is expected to authorize both Johnson & Johnson and Moderna boosters this week.

Many folks have already been eligible for Pfizer vaccine boosters. At least 7,500 have already gotten a third jab of the Pfizer vaccine in Richmond, according to Richmond City Health District Dr. Melissa Viray.

A recent presentation to the FDA shows that mixing and matching first shots and boosters is safe. Seeing that happening on the ground is expected in the river city within the next few days.

“I am very excited to see what’s coming down from CDC and FDA in coming days actually,” Dr. Viray said. Pending federal approval for Moderna and J&J boosters, many more people will be eligible for extra doses soon.

Dr. Viray said vaccine supply is not an issue in the city so all three boosters should be available almost immediately once they’re approved.

“If all goes as planned, we are expecting to potentially vaccinate as early as this coming week,” she said.

People may get to choose which booster they want.

“It may just be, if this is authorized, that folks have more options,” Dr. Viray said.

That’s something that could interest those who got the less effective one-and-done J&J shot. A recent study suggests those people would benefit more by mixing it up with Pfizer or Moderna versus another dose of J&J.

The doctor said people should look out for additional guidance on mixing and matching. “I don’t think the intent from CDC or FDA is to leave folks with this gamut of choices and say ‘here you go!”

She added when the time comes, talking with your health care provider isn’t a bad idea either.

Once you’re eligible for a booster, Dr. Viray said you can walk into city-run mass vaccination sites like the Richmond International Raceway — but it is recommended that you make an appointment.

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