NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - A local infectious disease specialist explains what the approval of the Johnson & Johnson's booster shot means for people already vaccinated from COVID-19.

On Friday, the FDA advisory panel voted to recommend a second Johnson and Johnson shot for emergency use authorization. The decision now heads to the FDA who is expected to make a final ruling in the coming days. But what does that mean for the 15-million people who got J&J shots?

"If it's what the CDC is recommending, I would follow their advice," Alex Ralph, who got the J&J COVID-19 vaccine, said. That's a one-shot dose that may soon have an approved second dose booster.

"J&J was one and done and now they have presented some date regarding a second dose two months later," said Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Schaffner said Pfizer's approved booster is given six months after the first dose. Moderna's booster will also have six months once approved, which doctors say could be next week. So, with three boosters that could be available soon, can people mix and match?

"They are doing something quite similar in Europe," Schaffner said. "Only limited data has been presented in the United States."

Schaffner said Europe has a widely used AstraZeneca vaccine that's not licensed in the US.

"And they've often given one dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine followed by the Pfizer or Moderna," Dr. Schaffner explained.

He said the AstraZeneca vaccine is like the J&J vaccine mixed with the other approved vaccines. But for J&J recipients such as Ralph, he said he would wait for guidance from the CDC.

"Yeah, if it's safe, I wouldn't have a problem with it," Ralph said.

Recommended for you

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.