COVID Health Question: Should Older Americans Get Booster Shots?

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With the news this week that President Biden has tested positive for COVID, many Americans are understandably wondering how he’ll fare with the virus at age 79 — and what protection he’s received from his vaccinations, which include two shots of reminder.

Should older Americans get a first — and a second — booster shot to protect against COVID?

“COVID reminders aren’t just safe, they can save lives,” Dr. David Culpepper, a general practitioner in Lexington, Ky., told Fox News Digital in an email Thursday.

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“The benefits are undeniable,” Culpepper also said.

“When we look at the number of people infected with COVID who are now showing mild symptoms, it is all attributable to [the] vaccines that teach the immune system how to fight the virus.”

He continued: “It is particularly important for older people to receive the reminders, due to their relative vulnerability to the virus compared to younger people.”

President Joe Biden receives a fourth dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in the South Court Auditorium on March 30, 2022 in Washington, DC Before receiving his second booster shot, the President made remarks calling on Congress to pass a new legislation to provide more funding to help with the pandemic response.

President Joe Biden receives a fourth dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in the South Court Auditorium on March 30, 2022 in Washington, DC Before receiving his second booster shot, the President made remarks calling on Congress to pass a new legislation to provide more funding to help with the pandemic response.
(Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

He said there was no risk to the elderly from the boosters – other than “mild symptoms” after the injection.

“I got a second reminder,” an 84-year-old man who lives in the Washington, DC area told Fox News Digital. “I’m more concerned about the complications of the virus at my age than the possible risks of the vaccine.”

He also shared that he “masks himself when he’s out in public again,” having relaxed his mask routine over the past few months.

“It’s especially important that older people get the boosters, because of their relative vulnerability to the virus compared to younger people.”

President Biden received his first Pfizer/BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine booster on Monday, September 27, 2021 at the White House, as Fox News Digital reported at the time.

Biden received a second COVID booster vaccination on March 30, 2022, as reported by Fox News Digital.

Dr. Manjul Shukla transfers the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021, at a mobile vaccination clinic in Worcester, Mass.

Dr. Manjul Shukla transfers the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021, at a mobile vaccination clinic in Worcester, Mass.
(AP Photo/Steven Senne)

“He [Biden] is fully vaccinated and double vaccinated and has very mild symptoms,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement Thursday.

“He has started taking Paxlovid. Per CDC guidelines, he will be self-isolating at the White House and will continue to perform full duties during this time.”

The CDC recommended a second COVID booster shot for older Americans in March of this year.

The agency said in a statement that “the CDC is updating its recommendations to allow certain immunocompromised people and people over age 50 who received an initial booster dose at least 4 months ago to be eligible to another mRNA boost to increase their protection against severe COVID-19 disease.”

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Biden’s chances of a “serious outcome” from COVID are “less than 1%,” despite the president being 79, Dr. Nicole Saphier said Thursday on Fox News. (Biden turns 80 in November this year.)

A woman with a mask is shown receiving a COVID vaccine from her car.

A woman with a mask is shown receiving a COVID vaccine from her car.
(Stock)

Some Americans remain wary of vaccines that have not been proven for decades.

“I’m not getting vaccines anymore,” a mother and grandmother from Scottsdale, Ariz., told Fox News Digital. “I complied with the government and got two shots – but these reminders are a bridge too far for me. These shots haven’t been around long enough.”

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She continued, “I’m healthy and I don’t feel it. [COVID] is no longer a bet. Everyone I know who’s had it recently says it sounds like a bad cold.”

The American Hospital Association (AMA) has appealed for federal help to better deliver coronavirus vaccines into the arms of Americans.

The American Hospital Association (AMA) has appealed for federal help to better deliver coronavirus vaccines into the arms of Americans.
(Stock)

A father of four in New York has shared with Fox News Digital that he will no longer be receiving reminders for COVID-19.

He has already received a double vaxx and received a booster shot, he said.

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“I’m done with boosters and injections,” he said, sharing his personal opinion.

He added: “My doctor told me that the booster [today] is only 30% effective.”

He also said: “If I get COVID I was told to let my doctor know and he will get me the appropriate medicine. Then I will have a cold for about three days,” he said .

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