In an announcement Monday morning, the commissioner of New York City’s health department announced that all New Yorkers 18 and over would be eligible to receive a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
All New York residents, including all Columbia students age 18 and older can now get a booster shot to protect against COVID-19. Columbia had previously stated that students in residence halls were eligible for booster shots, but this announcement from the city opens eligibility to any city resident—including, for example, students who live off-campus.
After an uptick in recent COVID-19 cases in the city, and with the advent of cooler weather potentially driving more residents inside, Dr. Dave Chokshi, the New York City Health Commissioner, announced that he was issuing a Commissioner’s Advisory to all health care providers to “ensure there are no access barriers.” Adults can determine their own levels of risk, but in practice, he said, no provider would turn away a patient so long as it’s been at least two months since a Johnson & Johnson dose or six months since a Pfizer or Moderna dose.
As of now, Columbia states that it will be providing only a limited number of Pfizer or Johnson & Johnson booster shots for eligible students, who can schedule on-campus boosters through the student health portal. Students can also schedule boosters through the New York City vaccine portal.
When asked about the expansion of vaccines offered through the school, a Barnard College spokesperson said “Adults ages 18 to 64 who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission may receive a booster shot — and schools are among the settings that could pose elevated risks.” The spokesperson also said Barnard would update its students if the public health guidance was updated.
Updated guidance via the NYC Health Vaccine website
Pfizer vaccine vial via Wikimedia Commons