All Utah adults now eligible for COVID-19 booster shots, says governor

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FILE – In this Sept. 14, 2021 file photo, a syringe is prepared with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic at the Reading Area Community College in Reading, Pa. President Joe Biden has directed OSHA to write a rule requiring employers with at least 100 workers to force employees to get vaccinated or produce weekly test results showing they are virus free.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) – One week out from Thanksgiving, Governor Spencer Cox is calling on all fully-vaccinated adults in Utah to consider getting their COVID-19 vaccine booster shot.

During his Thursday press conference, Gov. Cox explains current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is that any adult in the country living in high-risk areas is eligible for a booster shot. He notes that while this is confusing, there are reports the CDC and FDA will issue more explanatory guidelines on Friday.

While the wait continues for those guidelines, Gov. Cox says that Utah’s current COVID-19 numbers mean almost all Utahns live in areas at high risk of transmission. Because of this, effect Friday, November 19, all Utahns who are fully vaccinated and 18-years-old and older, are eligible to receive their booster shot.

He notes the state is asking all providers to provide these booster doses to interested Utahns.

WATCH: Gov. Cox discusses expanded booster eligibility

If you are living in the state of Utah, are over the age of 18, and have received your second dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine more than six months ago, you are eligible for your booster shot. If you received your Johnson & Johnson one-dose shot more than two months ago, you are also eligible.

Gov. Cox also announced antiviral pills to treat COVID-19 may also soon be available in Utah. He says he believes oral antiviral treatments will be significant in preventing severe disease and possible death from the illness, which has already taken the lives of nearly 3,400 Utahns.

“We are currently developing a statewide distribution and access plan, much like we did with the vaccines to make sure that we get them to the eligible population as soon as they are available here in the state,” Cox said.

However, Cox continued a plea he has made for months.

“I want to emphasize and reemphasize over and over and over again that vaccination is still the best way to protect yourself and to protect those around you,” he implored. “If you or your kids have not been vaccinated. I would encourage you to get vaccinated now.”

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