by Max Darrow

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) — The San Francisco Department of Public Health is expanding the booster shot eligibility to all adults 18 and older, provided they qualify based on the timing of the previous dose of vaccine.

On Saturday, KPIX met Shannon Scott at a vaccine clinic in the Bayview. She was there to get her booster shot.

“I just decided today was the day,” Scott said. “When I found out they were giving them out here, I came immediately to get mine.”

Per FDA recommendations, seniors, people with underlying medical conditions, people who work in long-term care facilities, and those who work in high-risk settings are currently eligible for a booster shot.

However, SFDPH does not want to turn people away from boosters as case rates increase in the city with the approaching holiday season.

“We are taking an expansive approach to COVID-19 boosters, realizing that people are at risk of getting COVID or spreading it as we enter the busy holiday season,” said Director of Health, Dr. Grant Colfax. “We are already seeing an uptick in cases and that could mean hospitalization for some vulnerable people, even if they are fully vaccinated. We have been stressing that boosters are essential for higher-risk individuals but now it’s become apparent that we need many more people to receive a booster dose so that we can protect ourselves, our families and friends, and our community.”

Dr. Malathi Srinivasan, with Stanford Healthcare, tells KPIX the booster is “incredibly safe and very effective.”

“Winter is coming and a winter surge is coming unless we all take collective action,” she said. “Pfizer is the first out of the gate with the new vaccine data. It shows the booster reduces your chances of getting COVID by 95%.”

A Walgreens in the Marina District was busy administering booster shots on Saturday.

“My daughter came to get her booster shot today,” said Paolien Hung, who lives in San Francisco. “I think that it’s wonderful thing to do. Everyone needs to do it. Then we can move on with normal life. It works.”