Dr. Fauci Says COVID-19 Boosters Will Be Necessary This Winter. Here's Why

The winter of 2020 saw a surge in Covid cases, and this year, while we have vaccines available, experts are still worried about Covid's winter spread and want people to remember to things aren't "normal" yet (from NBC News). One of those experts is Dr. Anthony Fauci. Dr. Fauci, as Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, became a household name as an expert on this pandemic. And for this year's Thanksgiving and Christmas and heading into winter, he makes it clear that everyone should get vaccinated or get a booster.


"The data show that the cases are starting to go up," Fauci explained on CNN's "State of the Union." And he confirmed that this isn't unexpected for winter as "people start to go indoors more. And we know that immunity does wane over time." But even though it's an expected uptick in cases, that doesn't mean it should be ignored.

Fauci says to get the booster for optimal protection since no vaccine is 100% effective against any disease. "Get vaccinated if you're not vaccinated and boostered if you have been vaccinated," Dr. Fauci said.

Boosters help keep vaccine protection optimal

The CDC has approved booster shots for all adults 18 and older. It has to be six months after your second shot of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or two months after your single shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, according to CNN. 60 million eligible adults in the US are unvaccinated and therefore vulnerable, which leaves room for the virus to continue its spread and, as Fauci put it, "Spills over into the vaccinated." So as we spend more time indoors with the cold weather, that gives the virus more opportunity to spread.


With the more contagious Delta variant of Covid spreading in the U.S. and a large part of causing breakthrough cases in vaccinated people, booster shots can help slow transmission and keep people safe (from CDC).

Getting booster shots isn't something new in medicine. Albert Shaw, a Yale Medicine infectious diseases expert, said that we get vaccine boosters for diseases like chickenpox, tetanus, measles, and more "because you need the extra doses to get longer lasting protective immunity," and like Fauci, he confirmed that with Covid, "We have to remember that we are learning about this as we go" (from Yale Medicine).