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Eligibility for COVID shots expands for immunosuppressed and children


Since 2020, COVID-19 has hospitalized nearly 13,000 South Dakotans. In the last few weeks, CDC guidance has simplified who is eligible for a vaccine when.

David Basel is a doctor of internal medicine at Avera and explained the changes.

“FDA clearance for boosters on Pfizer vaccines in toddlers – so 6 months of age through 5 years – they’ve added a booster into that youngest age range for Pfizer," Basel said. "Now what came out this week was those that are either immunosuppressed or aged 65 or older can get a second bivalent booster.”

Basel said the level of COVID concern changes based on your demographic.

"Most of us have mostly forgotten about COVID, it’s not effecting our daily lives that much – including my own," Basel said. "COVID is still out there. For much of us it’s not nearly as much of a threat anymore, but in the elderly or immunosuppressed, we are still seeing them get hospitalized.”

For unvaccinated people, there are still opportunities to protect yourself.

“Biden has announced that he’s going to extend a program to provide vaccine free of charge to uninsured individuals – COVID vaccinations,” Basel sai.

You can find more information about vaccines at the following LINK.

C.J. Keene is a Rapid City-based journalist covering the legal system, education, and culture