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New Yorkers Battling Cancer Get 3rd COVID Shot; U.S. Expected To Recommend Boosters For All

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- The Biden administration is expected to recommend widespread use of COVID vaccine booster shots.

Sources within the administration say the shots will be issued eight months after people's last vaccination.

Distribution could start as early as September, but as CBS2's John Dias reported Tuesday, some are already getting the extra protection.


It was a historic day on Long Island as cancer patients were among some of the first in the country to get the booster shot.

"I think it's important to protect myself, my wife, my daughter," one man said.

Shot number three was also in the books for 81-year-old Art Magee, who is fighting multiple cancers.

"I had no side effects from the first two shots. They're working and I'm hoping I'm around for next year," Magee told CBS2's Carolyn Gusoff.

Doctors at Northwell Health began administering additional doses Tuesday to people who are immunocompromised, after the Food and Drug Administration called the extra dose an "effective immunity boost" for this group of people.

Dr. David Chiang is fighting lung cancer.

"I believe the vaccine is our really best tool to deal with the pandemic going on," Chiang said.

"That's a profound and deeply important message to get out to the public. It is so important to take care of our most vulnerable patients," said Dr. Richard Barakat, physician-in-chief at Northwell Cancer Institute.

"Cancer patients who contract COVID have a worse outcome than patients who do not have cancer. So it is very important as the new Delta variant is really spreading," Barakat added.

It looks like most Americans will be able to get an extra shot as early as next month. A formal announcement is expected later this week, but sources within the Biden administration say the boosters will be given eight months after the second Moderna or Pfizer vaccination. There's no guidance for Johnson & Johnson recipients yet.

The White House said immunity of the COVID vaccine and the highly transmissible Delta variant have fueled their decision.

Doctors say 90-plus percent of new infections are among the unvaccinated, adding that increases risk of new variants and the need for different boosters.

Nursing home residents and health care workers could be the next in line to receive the new shots, followed by older Americans.


Also beginning Tuesday, a new vaccine mandate goes into effect in New York City.

"Now because of Delta we have to go all the way," City Councilman Stephen Levin said. "We have to make sure that everybody in New York City is vaccinated."

Both workers and patrons at gyms, restaurants and indoor entertainment venues will now be required to show proof of at least one vaccine shot with the city's NYC COVID Safe app, the state's Excelsior pass or a paper vaccination card.

"It's one of those deals that we have to just live with. Is it fair to anybody? No, it's not fair to anybody," Carl Gould, president of 7 Stage Advisors, told Dias.

Gould, a worldwide leading authority on business, said small business owners, who are still trying to win back customers, will suffer the most.

"You've been spending the last 18 months just hanging on for dear life, and now what we're doing is restricting the flow of potential customers that will come through there," he said.

City Hall will spend the next few weeks educating businesses on the requirements and offering training on how to deal with customers who refuse. Then, enforcement starts on Sept. 13.

It's $1,000 for the first offense, $2,000 for the second, and $5,000 for the third.

CBS2's Carolyn Gusoff contributed to this report.

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