Permissive Recommendation for Covid Vaccine 2nd Booster?

I have a question about the permissive recommendation by the CDC for the 2nd Covid vaccine booster. Does that mean I should get the booster or that I can get it if I just want one?

There’s an important distinction between “should” and “can.” According to the AMA, the CDC gave permissive recommendation, which means that it’s not saying you should get it, but that you can if you so choose:

“The CDC’s action is commonly known as a “permissive recommendation,” meaning that certain people may get the second booster if they wish to get it, though the agency itself is not yet officially urging them to do so.”

There are a couple of recently updated tables on the CDC website in which the language is clearly permissive about the 2nd booster dose.  One is dated April 2, 2022, Stay Up to Date with Your Covid-19 Vaccines. The other is dated April 1, 2022, Covid-19 Vaccine Boosters.

Some of us may be finding it challenging to get the booster scheduled right now. I wonder if that means even those providing the booster might be wondering who should or should not get one.

Does vaccine supply have a bearing on the issue? Or is there significant uncertainty about the necessity for the 2nd booster?

I wonder if experts are waiting for further guidance from the scheduled FDA Advisory Committee meeting on April 6, 2022.

That’s this coming Wednesday. I’d like to listen to the meeting as I have in the past, but I have a schedule conflict that day. That’s not the only conflict I have.

No officials are clearly saying that I should not get the 2nd booster. On the other hand, neither are they clearly saying I should.

Maybe I’ll wait for an FDA update after the April 6 meeting. And I wonder if that will lead to a CDC Advisory Committee meeting.

Update April 5, 2022: Here’s a link to a new article on CDC Director Rochelle Walensky’s remarks intended to clarify the confusion about this issue of whether the 2nd booster is needed or not. It turns out it all depends (as it usually does). If I’ve been infected with Omicron in the last 2-4 months, then I might not need one, at least for now.

The catch is that my immunity is waning. I might still need the 2nd booster. I’m old enough that it might be a good idea to get it. On the other hand, I’m probably still going to need another jab come autumn. Dr. Walensky says this is “a personal judgment call.”

I’m still waiting for the FDA Advisory Committee’s conclusions on April 6, 2022.

Author: James Amos

I'm a retired consult-liaison psychiatrist. I navigated the path in a phased retirement program through the hospital where I was employed. I was fully retired as of June 30, 2020. This blog chronicles my journey.

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