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Johnson & Johnson To Seek OK From FDA On COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shot

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - Johnson & Johnson is looking to get its booster shot approved by the FDA. It comes as the delta variant continues to wreak havoc.

According to Johnson & Johnson, its booster shot generates a spike in antibodies to fight the virus.

Steve Kochanowski got his J&J shot in June.

"Everything went well. I didn't have any side effects. I had some numbness in my arm but other than that, nothing," he said to KDKA.

Kochanowski wanted the one-and-done shot. He plans to roll up his sleeve again if the booster gets approved.

"I see no reason not to. To me it's just like getting your flu shot booster every year," Kochanowski said over Zoom.

Right now doctors are waiting on more data to be released about the booster. They feel it will still be a few months before you need to get one.

As for any side effects, that is another unknown.

"I would not expect anything worrisome with a booster dose but we need to see what the data shows," Pitt Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology Dr. Lee Harrison said.

As proactive as the shots may be, infectious disease physician Dr. Amesh Adalja feels a booster is not currently needed.

"For me, the threshold to need a booster vaccine in a healthy individual is to see people getting breakthrough infections that are severe enough to land them in the hospital. That's just not happening," he said over Zoom.

When the time comes, health systems are looking to avoid the trouble that slowed the initial vaccine rollout.

"From what we've heard, we have a good supply of all three vaccines," AHN Internal Medicine Physician Dr. Marc Itskowitz said.

Doctors said these boosters help, but people still need to get their first doses if we want to end the pandemic.

"That's what's continuing to propagate the pandemic," Dr. Harrison said.

"It's about more than yourself. It's about making sure that we can enjoy the things that we have been given and the opportunities," Kochanowski said.

The CDC said about 14 million Americans received a J&J shot.

With talks of booster shots, what does that mean if you laminated your vaccine card? Doctors say it shouldn't be a problem. If you need a new one, your vaccination site should be able to give you one.

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