WASHINGTON (CBSDFW.COM) – CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement on Nov. 29 that everyone age 18 or older should receive a booster shot after their initial immunization to help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus as fears about a new variant grow.

Walensky said that those who received the Pfizer or Moderna shots should get their booster six months after their second dose, and that those who received the Johnson & Johnson shot should receive their booster two months after their initial dose.

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The updated recommendations came after a new variant, called Omicron, emerged in South Africa earlier this month.

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Scientists are still learning about the variant, but early data suggests the Omicron variant may be more transmissible that even the Delta variant.

“I strongly encourage the 47 million adults who are not yet vaccinated to get vaccinated as soon as possible and to vaccinate the children and teens in their families as well because strong immunity will likely prevent serious illness. I also want to encourage people to get a COVID-19 test if they are sick. Increased testing will help us identify Omicron quickly,” Walensky said Monday.

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Walensky also encouraged Americans to continue following prevention strategies like wearing masks, social distancing, getting tested if you feel sick, washing your hands, and covering your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.

CBSDFW.com Staff