Booster shots, the long-anticipated answer to the more contagious delta variant of COVID-19, have arrived in Teton County, helping residents breathe a bit easier through their third winter with the virus.
Public health officials are administering third doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to those who received the original two doses more than six months ago, while currently prioritizing the shots for those at elevated risk of severe illness such as the elderly, those with underlying conditions and health care workers.
Most recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also approved booster shots for teachers and other school workers.
To sign up for the extra jab, go to https://hipaa.jotform.com/TCHD/covidvax or call the Teton County Health Department at 307-732-8628.
The first large-scale vaccine clinic — for 600 to 700 residents — will take place Saturday, Oct. 9, at the Presbyterian Church of Jackson Hole, 1251 S. Park Loop Road. Those who are interested in a first or second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine can get one at the same clinic, which will run from 8:30 a.m. to noon, then 1 to 3:30 p.m.
The offerings from Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson&Johnson are also available at the health department’s 460 E. Pearl Ave. headquarters.
Immunocompromised residents who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine can still receive an additional third dose, which may be necessary to ensure the body develops a strong enough immune response.
On Thursday, Mary Kay Werner and her husband, David Werner, rolled up to the Pearl Avenue clinic to get their booster shots and the added sense of security the doses would bring.
David, 72, had experienced a “breakthrough” infection — meaning he tested positive for COVID-19 despite being fully vaccinated — the same day the Food and Drug Administration authorized Pfizer’s booster shots. His wife said it was easy and simple to sign up: “Just five minutes on the phone.”
The pair went through the entire clinic in less than 10 minutes, thanks to the extensive logistical organization of public health officials.