Children as young as five-years-old can now receive the new COVID-19 bivalent booster shots at the Burlington County Health Department’s weekly vaccine clinics starting Oct. 26.
The new updated boosters from Pfizer and Moderna offer stronger protection against severe illness from the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron subvariants that are now the dominant strains circulating in New Jersey. Burlington County started administering the shots to adults and teenagers 12 and up last month when it launched its weekly vaccine clinics in Evesham, Bordentown and Westampton.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expanded emergency use authorization for the shots to children ages five through 11 last week, prompting the county to start preparations for shots for this younger population.
Residents are recommended to receive either brand of the bivalent booster if at least two months has lapsed since their primary vaccination series or their first or second booster. These recommendations replace all previous recommendations for the over five age group. The Pfizer bivalent booster may be given to those ages five and up. The Moderna bivalent booster may be given to those ages six years and up.
Burlington County Health Department Director Dr. Herb Conaway said all eligible residents should seek the added protection of the boosters as soon as possible to become better protected for likely surges in COVID-19 activity this fall and winter.
“Children are back in school and cooler weather is pushing more activities indoors, so it’s imperative for residents to act now to get up-to-date with their vaccines and boosters,” said Conaway. “These shots are safe and effective and offer the best possible protection against a likely surge in COVID disease. We’re also bracing for an active influenza season, so getting a seasonal flu shot is also critical.”
Burlington County’s COVID-19 vaccination clinics are held three-days-a-week at rotating locations through a partnership between the County Health Department and Mobile Medical Services and Technology. All three weekly clinics are expected to have Pfizer and Moderna shots and boosters available for all eligible populations beginning Oct. 26.
The locations and times of the clinics are as follows:
- Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Gibson House Community Center, 535 East Mains Street, Evesham;
- Thursdays from noon to 6 p.m. at the Bordentown Senior Center, 3 Municipal Drive, Bordentown;
- Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Burlington County Health Department, 15 Pioneer Boulevard, Westampton.
Appointments for the clinics can be made online at https://patientportal.advancedmd.com/149623/onlinescheduling/v2/providers or by calling 844-569-0390 during normal business hours.
No walk-ins are permitted.
Flu shot clinics are scheduled each Thursday at varying times and locations throughout the county. A complete schedule is available at https://www.co.burlington.nj.us/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1929.
Burlington County is among the state leaders in COVID vaccinations, with more than 83 percent of its population of residents five and older vaccinated with their primary doses. More than 60 percent have also received at least one booster shot.
“We’ve made incredible progress in the fight against COVID, but we must still be vigilant and do our best to continue to guard our communities against potential surges,” said Conaway. “Vaccines and boosters are our best defense, which is why our county continues to make shots available at multiple locations.”