Booster Eligibility Expands for Adults in Hawai‘i

The Hawai‘i Department of Health is adopting new guidelines from US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on COVID-19 booster vaccinations.

Effective immediately all adults age 18 and older who completed their primary mRNA vaccinations of Pfizer or Moderna at least six months ago are eligible for boosters.

The DOH reports that the following recipients of a Pfizer or Moderna primary series should receive a single COVID-19 booster dose.

  • People aged 50 years and older
  • Adults in long term care settings

All other persons aged 18 and older who received a Pfizer or Moderna primary series may receive a single COVID-19 booster dose.

Boosters are also recommended for anyone who received Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine more than two months ago.

A woman receives a COVID-19 vaccine shot at Lānaʻi Community Health Center. Photo Courtesy: Hawaiʻi Community Health

“We’ve been getting booster shots for measles, mumps, chickenpox, tetanus, whooping cough and other diseases for years. Now the research shows boosters will help protect us from COVID-19,” said Health Director Dr. Elizabeth Char, FACEP.

The US Food and Drug Administration expanded its emergency use authorization for Pfizer and Moderna booster vaccinations early Friday morning. The CDC expanded recommendations for booster shots Friday afternoon.

The DOH reports that evidence reviewed by the CDC shows the primary series of Pfizer and Moderna vaccines offer significant protection against hospitalization and death. That protection diminishes over time. Booster vaccinations provide additional protection by reenergizing our natural defense systems, according to the DOH.

“We invite anyone who is not vaccinated to get vaccinated soon so they’ll be protected during the holidays. And, if you got your shots a while ago, a booster is available for you today,” Char said.

Information on where vaccines are available can be found at

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