Updated COVID-19 Omicron Booster Announced by CDC

The new booster’s availability is followed by President Biden’s statement that “the pandemic is over.”

Photo Courtesy / Unsplash Towfiqu barbhuiya

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a new COVID-19 vaccine booster designed to target the Omicron variant, announced in a Sept. 1 statement. Both the Pfizer-NTech booster (available for ages 12 and older), and the Moderna booster (available for ages 18 and older) have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). 

The announcement was followed by President Biden’s claim that the pandemic has come to an end. “The pandemic is over,” is what he told CBS News on Sept. 18. Ten days prior, a White House statement shows the president encouraging people to take the updated booster to combat the United States’ issue with the Omicron variant.

Although no mandates have been placed on the new Omicron booster, CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky recommends eligible candidates receive the vaccine. “If you are eligible, there is no bad time to get your COVID-19 booster and I strongly encourage you receive it.”

Masks are no longer required in the majority of public areas in New York City as of Sept. 7, when Governor Kathy Hochul lifted the mandates on public transit. 79.7 percent of New York City residents are fully vaccinated, and 40.1 percent of residents received an additional booster dose. 

The University announced its booster mandates in the beginning of Spring 2022. No additional boosters were mandated. 

Nationwide COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths have decreased from pandemic highs. The CDC reports a daily average of 37,808 cases, 3,247 hospitalizations and 332 deaths. New York City had a 9.4 percent positivity rate in the past seven days according to the New York City Health Department. A daily average of 1,997 cases and 7 deaths have been reported this week.