Doctors say they still want unvaccinated people to focus on getting the vaccine.By Meghan Schiller

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Big news Monday in the world of booster shots, as Johnson & Johnson could soon become the third and final federally authorized vaccine provider looking to start a conversation with the FDA about booster shots.

The ask could happen early this week, according to a report out Monday by the New York Times.

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Allegheny Health Network Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Nathan Shively told KDKA’s Meghan Schiller that we’re not going to “boost” our way out of this pandemic, but he’s glad to see the developments slated for this month.

KDKA’s Meghan Schiller talked to people who received the single-dose J&J vaccine, and there’s a common concern:

“I had always wondered if I would be covered enough with the one shot or not,” Gibsonia resident Maria Hartwick said.

“I wasn’t exactly sure how strong the one-dose vaccine is, and I think any kind of booster is good for anything,” said Kelly Wodnicki, Pittsburgh resident.

Both Hartwick and Wodnicki told KDKA they’re thankful that COVID-19 hasn’t hit home, even if they’ve felt “less covered.”

“No (I did not get COVID-19) and I have a boy on the football team, going to school every day, so knock on wood,” Hartwick said.

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When headlines about the potential for a J&J booster started flooding their feeds, both told KDKA’s Meghan Schiller they’re interested.

“I think I would it to be protected. I don’t want to infect my parents, who are older, or anyone else,” Hartwick said.

Wodnicki agrees but fears she won’t be eligible for quite some time. She’s also open to “mix” the vaccine providers if that’s ever an option.

“I would think that I would not be eligible to get the booster right away,” Wodnicki said. “I work at Pitt, but I’ve been working from home, and I don’t have any underlying conditions.”

Allegheny Health Network’s Dr. Shively said we have seen some “wearing-off” or waning of vaccine efficacy in Moderna and Pfizer shots, but it’s wearing off to levels still higher than J&J’s vaccine efficacy.

“I think that’s why people who have gotten the J&J have been looking forward to some potential news on boosters for them and whether they will boost efficacy,” Dr. Shively said.

Even though J&J could ask the FDA to consider this sometime this week, meetings to talk boosters aren’t scheduled until mid-October.

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In the meantime, Dr. Shively said he wants unvaccinated people to focus on getting a shot, saying most hospitalizations and serious cases are still largely in unvaccinated people.

Meghan Schiller