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County Administrator's Office

For Immediate Release

Sonoma County issues guidance on COVID-19 booster shots, mix-and-match boosters

Santa Rosa,CA | October 26, 2021

Sonoma County residents who received any of the three COVID-19 vaccines are now eligible for a booster shot if they meet new criteria outlined Monday by the county Department of Health Services.  

Three groups of people should get a booster dose six months after they received their second shot of the two-dose Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine: 

Two groups of people may receive a booster dose, if they want one, six months after they received their second shot of the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine: 

  • People from the ages of 18 to 49 with underlying medical conditions or at increased risk of COVID-19 because of social inequities.
  • People 18 and older who are at increased risk of COVID-19 because of their job or institutional setting.  

Everyone 18 and older who received the one-dose Johnson & Johnson/Janssen vaccine should get a booster dose at least two months after their first shot.  

Anyone qualifying for a booster can “mix-and-match” any of the vaccines approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Individuals may receive either the same or a different COVID-19 vaccine, depending on advice from a health care provider, individual preference, availability or convenience.  

People who qualify under the new guidelines should contact their primary care doctor, local pharmacy or visit to schedule a booster shot.  

The eligibility criteria align Sonoma County with guidelines issued Friday by an independent scientific workgroup that coordinates vaccine policies in California, Washington, Oregon and Nevada. The guidelines, crafted by the Western States Scientific and Safety Review Workgroup, incorporated social determinants of vulnerability in the assessment of medical conditions that qualify individuals for booster doses.  

“We are prioritizing boosters for people at risk of serious illness and death from COVID-19,” said Dr. Sundari Mase, Sonoma County’s health officer. “The greatest risk, however, is faced by people who have not been vaccinated. You can protect yourself, your family and your friends by getting vaccinated today.”  

As of Monday, 341,163 county residents aged 12 and older are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, equivalent to 79 percent of the county’s eligible population. Another 30,458 residents have been partially vaccinated.  

The FDA approved the “mix-and-match” strategy and booster shots of the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines on Oct. 20 after reviewing clinical data on the safety and effectiveness of the doses. The Moderna booster is half the size of the dose administered for a primary series dose. The FDA authorized boosters of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on Sept. 22. The decisions were subsequently affirmed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.