by Max Darrow

SAN CARLOS (KPIX) — The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 booster shot is now more accessible in the Bay Area, as hundreds of CVS Health stores across California now offer the shot to eligible populations.

CVS is following these guidelines set by ACIP and CDC:

• People 65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series

• People age 50 to 64 with certain underlying medical conditions should receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series

• People 18 to 49 who are at high risk for severe COVID-19 due to certain underlying medical conditions may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risk

• People age 18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a booster shot of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series

Bruce and Sherry Barbour went to a CVS in San Mateo on Saturday to get their booster shots.

“We were one of the first ones to get our first Pfizer shot and we’re past six months of having our second,” Sherry Barbour said. “Just to remain safe and to protect my husband and my granddaughter, who isn’t old enough to get the vaccine yet, and to just basically keep us as healthy as possible.”

While there wasn’t a long wait, Bruce told KPIX there were plenty of people there who signed up to get their booster shot.

“We stood in line for a few minutes and people backed up behind us,” he said. “Young people as well as elderly.”

Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, an infectious disease expert at UCSF, told KPIX he thinks people who are eligible for the booster shot should consider getting it. However, he doesn’t think the availability of the booster shot will be make a huge impact in slowing down the pandemic.

“It’s definitely a good idea for those over 65 in particular,” he said. “I think it’s very important, particularly for one segment of the population. But probably not the most important thing. The most important thing, of course, is to get the first shot regardless. Eighty million Americans have not been fully vaccinated.”

This booster is not for those who initially received the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccines but, rather, for those who initially received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, according to public health agency guidance.