With about a month to go until the fall season, U.S. COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths continue to rise relatively sharply — even before the early days of the respiratory virus season.

Obviously, things aren’t ideal – especially ahead of the holiday weekend.

From August 6 to 12, the latest period for which data is available, the number of hospitalizations related to COVID-19 increased by almost 22%, According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Deaths also rose between August 13 and 19, up 21% compared to the previous week.

The updated Covid-19 vaccine – tailored to the XBB.1.5 “Kraken” strain that dominated late last year and early this year – is tentatively slated to debut in the US in September – though it may not be until the middle or end of this month .

If you’re late for your COVID-19 vaccine or need a booster, should you get it now or stick with the latest (and maybe) best vaccine?

“Most people can probably wait until next month for a new vaccine,” said Dr. George Benjamin, executive director of the American Public Health Association. wealth.

However, those who were not vaccinated or who did not get vaccinated as recommended “probably should complete the vaccine series now.” their plans.

Dr. Stuart Ray, associate medical director for data integrity and analytics at Johns Hopkins University, said people with upcoming travel plans, or those planning gatherings such as conferences, weddings and/or other events, should also Consider getting a promotion now, rather than waiting.medical department told wealth.

Review CDC COVID-19 Vaccine Recommendations

When it comes to COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters, if you can’t remember who should get what and when, relax — you’re normal. (We’ll have to look it up too.)

Here is a recap, According to CDC:

  • 5 months to 5 years old Multiple doses of the COVID-19 vaccine may be required to update, including one or more booster doses tailored for the BA.5 variant. (The drugs were released in the U.S. around Labor Day last year.) How many shots young children need will depend on when they were born and how many doses, if any, they’ve already had. Consult your child’s pediatrician for more information.
  • People aged 6 to 64 Requires an initial set of COVID-19 vaccine injections (usually two), plus a booster dose of the newer BA.5 vaccine.
  • People 65 and over Same needs, but may require an additional dose of BA.5 booster, for a total of two booster doses.
  • Moderately or severely immunocompromised Their specific situation should be discussed with a doctor.

too little too late?

While the newer coronavirus boosters are just weeks away, experts point out they are tailored to a now-nearly extinct variant, and aside from possibly being too few, some say they must be too late late.

Experts say the new booster should be able to counter current major variants that didn’t exist when they were formulated — at least to some extent. They are expected to provide some level of protection against serious illness and death. Whether they are more effective than currently available BA.5 enhancers remains to be seen. In any case, antibody immunity from vaccination or infection lasts only three to six months on average, meaning many Americans may need some kind of new protection.

Dr. Eric Topol, professor of molecular medicine at Scripps Research and founder and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute, is concerned about the September boost in immunizations Effects on immunocompromised persons and the elderly.

He told us that if the new booster is “coming out next week or at the end of this month, it’s fine.” wealth early this month. “But if you wait until September, October, schools start to start. By then we’ve seen wastewater levels go up. We’re building a wave right now.”

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