UC Davis Health is vaccinating ages 12 and older

We're offering COVID-19 vaccines (first, second, and third doses) to anyone age 12 and older. Please use MyUCDavisHealth or California’s MyTurn.ca.gov to schedule your vaccine appointment.

UC Davis Health patients and non-patients can schedule appointments at our clinics in Auburn, Carmichael, Davis, Elk Grove, Folsom, Rancho Cordova, Rocklin, Roseville, and Sacramento.

COVID-19 vaccine boosters for the general public and third doses for immunocompromised people are now recommended by the CDC. Here's what you need to know from our UC Davis Health experts:

In mid-August, the CDC approved a third COVID-19 vaccine dose of Pfizer and Moderna for immunocompromised people. A few days later, the CDC recommended COVID-19 booster shots for the general public, which they can get eight months after their second dose of Pfizer or Moderna.

About 2.7% of U.S. adults are significantly immunocompromised. This population includes people who:

  • have solid tumor and hematologic malignancies
  • received solid-organ or hematopoietic stem cell transplant
  • have severe primary immunodeficiencies
  • are living with HIV
  • receive treatment with immunosuppressive medications such as cancer chemotherapeutic agents, TNF blockers, certain biologic agents (e.g., rituximab), and high-dose corticosteroids
  • are diagnosed with conditions that are considered to have an equivalent level of immunocompromise

According to the CDC’s recommendation for immunocompromised patients, the third dose must be given at least four weeks after the second dose.

UC Davis Health is contacting patients who meet the CDC’s criteria to schedule appointments for the third dose shot.

Learn more about how to get your COVID-19 booster

People with compromised immune systems: The CDC recommends that “people with moderately to severely compromised immune systems receive an additional dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine at least 28 days after a second dose” of Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

General public: The CDC recommends that the general public wait eight months after their second COVID-19 vaccine to get a booster shot of Pfizer or Moderna. That will begin in September for a very select group who were in the first round of vaccinations.

UC Davis Health has already begun administering third shots of COVID-19 vaccines to immunocompromised patients. These patients can be vaccinated at our vaccine clinic in Midtown Sacramento. We plan to match patients with their previous vaccine (either Pfizer or Moderna), but research shows that it’s safe for patients if there is a switch.

COVID-19 vaccinations for the general public didn’t begin until February. So for those who were among the first to get vaccinated, they can schedule a booster shot after Sept. 1.

UC Davis Health is contacting patients who meet the CDC’s criteria for the third dose shot.

Immunocompromised people are more likely to get severely ill from COVID-19. They are at higher risk for:

  • prolonged SARS-CoV-2 infection and shedding
  • viral evolution during infection and treatment
  • low antibody titers to SARS-CoV-2 variants

They are also more likely to transmit COVID-19 to people who live with them, and more likely to have breakthrough infection after immunization. More than 40% of hospitalized breakthrough cases are immunocompromised people.

In addition, the CDC explains that its latest data for the general public shows that current protection against severe infection, hospitalization, and death could diminish in the months ahead. For this reason, the CDC is recommending booster shots to maximize protection and prolong the effectiveness of the vaccines.

For immunocompromised people, the CDC recommends waiting at least 28 days after your second dose before getting a third dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

It’s recommended that the general public get a COVID-19 booster shot eight months after their second dose of either Pfizer or Moderna.

Side effects following the third COVID-19 vaccine are similar to side effects following the second dose, with slightly more pain at the injection site, fever, chills, and fatigue. No serious side effects were found in third dose studies.

Health experts recommend sticking with the same mRNA vaccine (either Pfizer or Moderna) that you received for the first two shots. However, the CDC notes that switching between brands is safe and allowed if necessary. UC Davis Health plans to match previous vaccine doses with the booster shot.

The CDC noted that there will likely be booster shots recommended for people who received Johnson & Johnson vaccines. However, administration of these vaccines did not begin until March. Researchers are still examining more data, which should be available in the next few weeks.

Experts don’t know yet how often additional COVID-19 vaccine doses will be needed. Data is needed to see how protection varies by specific vaccine and in different populations. This is likely to evolve as the pandemic evolves and may be impacted by the development of new variants.

It was understood that COVID-19 vaccines would not protect people forever. Although some vaccine manufacturers have publicly stated that they believe boosters are needed due to declining protection, there is very little data at this time that shows decreasing protection. So far, protection appears to be durable.