YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Although Covid-19 booster shots have been available now for a few weeks, demand for the vaccinations is not running as high as it was when shots were first available last winter.
Directors with Mercy Health say they are offering booster shots for those who are eligible for them at clinics in Youngstown and Warren. We’re told there has not been a surge in demand, at least not at facilities operated by Mercy Health.
“Part of it is many other community areas, such as pharmacies, are giving vaccines and that’s wonderful, that’s welcome. I think a lot of people have been receiving boosters over the last month or so, but we are seeing lower demand for those third doses,” said Dr. James Kravec, chief medical officer at Mercy Health Youngstown.
Right now, those over the age of 65 or who have certain other medical conditions are eligible for the Pfizer or Moderna booster.
The FDA has approved a third shot of the booster from Pfizer and is working on approval for Moderna.
Kravec said that’s a fairly small segment of the population and those who took the one-time Johnson and johnson vaccine still don’t qualify for the booster.
The latest surge of COVID-19 cases in this part of Ohio may finally be peaking as it has been in other parts of the state and the country as a whole.
Even though the nation passed the 700,000 for COVID-19-related deaths around the country late last week, the number of Americans who have been hospitalized with the virus has fallen by more than 30% over the last couple of weeks.
Still, local experts say doctors are still seeing a lot of patients with either COVID-19 or other respiratory illnesses.