July 13, 2023, News Staff — To help family physicians prepare for National Immunization Awareness Month in August, the Academy has published updated guidance on COVID-19 vaccines in the July/August issue of FPM. The free, online-only supplement features the latest vaccine recommendations, along with tips on communicating the importance of vaccination to patients.
For people 6 years and older who are not immunocompromised, a single dose of bivalent mRNA vaccine is sufficient to consider them up to date regardless of previous vaccination status. Adults 65 and older who are not immunocompromised may receive an additional booster dose at least four months after their first dose of bivalent mRNA vaccine.
People who are moderately or severely immunocompromised may require additional primary and booster doses, based on patient age and the vaccine used.
Bivalent mRNA vaccines are preferred unless contraindicated. Adults who cannot or will not receive an mRNA vaccine may receive a protein vaccine.
The guidance also offers three best practice tips:
The guidance document is the latest in a large collection of Academy resources on COVID-19 vaccines. For clinicians, these include a free online CME activity on improving COVID-19 vaccination rates in children ages 6 months through 5 years and a quick conversation guide on COVID-19 vaccinations for children 6 months and older. Patient-centered materials on familydoctor.org include articles on COVID-19 vaccines for children younger than 5 years, information for parents and debunking vaccine myths.
The AAFP has several additional resources in development as National Immunization Awareness Month approaches. Make sure to bookmark the Academy’s Immunizations and Vaccines webpage and to visit AAFP News and the AAFP Media Center for the latest news and information.