KALISPELL - Americans 50 and older and certain immunocompromised individuals are now eligible to receive a second Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 booster.
“This second booster is really a layer of protection that’s being added,” said Flathead County Health Officer Joe Russell.
Russell said eligible residents seeking a second COVID-19 booster shot in Flathead County can do so immediately after the recent FDA approval.
For now, Russell says the county will stick with vaccine distribution by appointment only through the county website but may reopen vaccine clinics if the demand is warranted.
“Primarily we’re online scheduling now so, we’re going to stay in-house, we got capacity to hopefully take care of it, and if not, we can always move back to the fairgrounds,” added Russell.
Data through the State of Montana shows that 45% of eligible residents are fully immunized in Flathead County.
Officials at Logan Health tell MTN News that only one patient is currently hospitalized with COVID-19.
“I mean the numbers make us really pleased, we seem to be in a really good place,” said Russell.
Russell believes COVID-19 boosters provide an extra line of defense against serious illness and potential death.
“We believe they do help, and I know most of the community that is getting vaccinated, they feel that they have a need, either take care of their family, take care of themselves, that’s driving a lot of the vaccinations,” said Russell.
Russell said that on average they’re administering 50 doses of the vaccine per week at the health office.
He expects that number to rise in the coming weeks and wants to remind residents that first-dose vaccine appointments are still available to those on the fence.
“It’s interesting, we still have people coming in and getting their first doses, and whatever drives people to get vaccinated, it’s great,” said Russell.
The Montana COVID-19 state tracking map shows that on Friday six new and 36 active COVID-19 cases were being reported in Flathead County.
To date, a total of 29,089 cases including 28,782 recoveries and 271 COVID-19 related deaths.
A total of 45,126 are fully vaccinated, representing 45% of the eligible population.