SALINAS – While Pfizer said on Wednesday that a booster of its COVID-19 vaccine could offer important protection against the new omicron variant, Monterey County health officials are not reporting the booster rate.
“We just aren’t reporting this at this time,” said Dr Edward Moreno, Monterey County health official. “We will continue to evaluate the data to see how reliable the data is, as we always do, before reporting anything.”
Moreno said he would verify the percentage or number of eligible Monterey County residents who received a recall, but that information was not provided until press time.
Since the omicron variant appeared in late November, U.S. health officials have urged individuals to get the vaccine and be given a booster, and last week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention began urging all adults to get the vaccine. vaccinate against COVID-19.
Monterey County’s Key COVID-19 Measurements webpage on Monday reported that the case rate is 4.9 per 100,000, up from 5.9 per 100,000 a week ago, and the test positive rate is 2.7% against 2.8% last week, there were 19 hospitalizations as of Monday against 18 last week.
The California Immunization Registry reports that with Monterey County residents aged 5 to 11 now eligible for COVID-19 vaccination, 76% of the eligible population received at least one dose of the vaccine while 68% of those eligible are fully vaccinated.
Moreno continued to emphasize the effectiveness of using face coverings in reducing the spread of COVID-19.
“They are particularly useful in indoor settings, which is why Monterey County is currently subject to a public health official’s order requiring anyone who is not vaccinated to wear a face cover. it is found in indoor public places and also requires that anyone, regardless of vaccination status, wear face coverings indoors “on public transport or in health facilities,” Moreno said.
Although the omicron variant has been identified in California and detected in specific counties, it has not yet been seen in any samples tested in Monterey County, although Moreno said it was reasonable to expect. that it will soon be detected here.
Moreno said that over time studies have shown that the effectiveness of vaccines in fully vaccinated people slowly declines in terms of protecting a person from COVID-19, but there is still good efficacy and good protection against hospitalization, serious illness and death.
“Studies also show that when a person is fully vaccinated and given a booster, there is an increase in their antibody titers and their ability to neutralize the virus in the lab. I think the evidence so far suggests that a booster is helpful in increasing an individual’s ability to fight COVID, ”he said.
Moreno said these are the studies the Food and Drug Administration used to authorize the recall for people over 18.
“I strongly, strongly encourage anyone who is fully vaccinated and eligible for the booster to make an appointment to get the booster,” he said.
Visit mcvaccinate.com to make an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccination.