Local counties working on plans to give out COVID vaccine booster shots

The White House and CDC are recommending vaccine "booster shots" for all Americans beginning September 20. They believe it is necessary to combat the Delta variant of the coronavirus.

Debra Elmore, who is immunocompromised, is now rushing to get her shot before appointments open to everyone.

"I want to hurry up and get mine so it doesn't get crowded and then I have to wait," said Debra Elmore, a transplant recipient and the Executive Director of the Bay Area Association of Kidney Patients.

In Santa Clara County, they are working on an implementation plan and are discussing how to reach people and where.

But the boosters are not without controversy.

Some, including Stanford University Infectious disease specialist, Catherine Blish, believe the third shot is unnecessary.

"I will admit I don't think we have enough data to support the administration of booster shots at this point. In fact, our vaccines are doing exactly what they're meant to do and are holding up great," said Dr. Blish.

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She believed extra doses should go abroad first.

"If you look from a public health standpoint, I think it's very difficult to make the argument that we should be giving a third dose to people who have already had two when so many people in the world haven't had a single dose," said Blish.

For now, The boosters will only be for those who got the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. Studies on the Johnson and Johnson booster are ongoing.

Officials' hope is that the elderly and nursing home employees will be amongst the first to get the extra doses, likely about 8 months after their original shots.

"Anything we can do to keep them safe, anything we can do to keep our staff safe so that we can have adequate personnel to meet the resident needs, I'm totally supportive of it," said Calvin Groeneweg, President of the American Assisted Living Nurses Association.

In Santa Clara County, they will be discussing their booster roll out plan at the board of supervisors meeting September 14th.