(Salem, OR) — In a press conference today, Governor Kate Brown provided an update on the current state of COVID-19 and the state’s plan for delivering booster shots. She was joined by Oregon Health Authority Public Health Director Rachael Banks, Deputy State Epidemiologist Dr. Tom Jeanne, and Oregon Department of Education Director Colt Gill.
“The good news is that, while we still have a long way to go, it appears things are slowly getting better,” said Governor Brown. “And every day there is renewed hope as we see more people getting vaccinated, progress on vaccines for our 5-11 year olds, and now, the beginning of boosters for some of our most vulnerable.
“Everyone who is eligible for a booster will get one. For those who have received the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine, I ask for your patience as we wait for further data and guidance from the federal government. For those who received the Pfizer vaccine but are not yet eligible for a booster, please know that you are still well protected from COVID-19. Boosters offer an extra layer of protection — and that is important for individuals at higher risk of exposure or illness — but you are still fully vaccinated with the two doses.”
Last week, the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shared their recommendations for the first large group of Americans who are eligible for booster shots. The Western States Scientific Safety Workgroup followed with their recommendations, which align with the federal guidance, and which Oregon will be following. The Governor’s statement on the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup can be found here.
These groups of Oregonians who received the Pfizer vaccine at least 6 months ago are now eligible and recommended to receive a booster shot:
- People 65 and older,
- People living in long-term care facilities, and
- People 50 and older with underlying medical conditions.
Additionally, the following group of Oregonians ages 18-64 who received the Pfizer vaccine may receive a booster after 6 months:
- People with underlying medical conditions, and
- People who are at a higher risk of COVID-19 exposure and transmission due to occupational or institutional setting. This includes Oregonians like health care workers, teachers and grocery workers.
A recording of today‘s press conference — with an American Sign Language simulcast — is available on YouTube.