So there I was on the radio this morning giving accolades to the staff at the Greater New Bedford Community Health Center, where I went to get my COVID booster shot. I called it a booster shot, not knowing that the booster hasn't been approved yet by the Centers for Disease Control.

Mike Lawrence, Public Information Officer for Mayor Jon Mitchell, called to correct the term I used. He said that it wasn't a "booster" shot that I received, but rather a "third" shot.

Yes, there is a difference between a COVID-19 booster shot and a third dose, but until now, I had no idea. If you're like me, a lot of this is confusing about the different COVID-19 vaccines and who's eligible for what.

"Phil, you have a very large audience that listens to you," Lawrence said. "The reason we know this in the mayor's office is because our staff has been answering the phone all day long. People saying they heard you say you got your booster, and everyone was asking asking where they could get their booster shot?"

Oops. Please accept my apology at city hall.

Additionally, I also owe a beg-pardon to Debra Lee, Americans with Disability Act Coordinator, who works with many of New Bedford's senior population.

"The booster shot has not yet been approved by the CDC, but that could happen as soon as this week," she said. She too, was flooded with phone calls, as "everyone was calling wondering if we were holding out on them?"

Lee, who has worked at the 181 Hillman location for over nine years, continued to say, "We're eager to give the booster to as many people as possible, but we have to wait for CDC approval, and as soon as it does get approved, there'll be a press release from the mayor's office so people will be aware."

When it comes down to groups of people, Lee said, "The seniors are doing very well. They're the best category of all, but we still have some folks out there who haven't had any shots. If people haven't received their first or second COVID shots, they really need to do so, not only for their own protection, but for the protection of others. I can't impress that enough."

According to the CDC, "A booster shot is for people whose immune response may have weakened over time. A third dose is for people who may not have had a strong enough immune response from the first two doses. Consult your health care provider about which might be right for you."

Sorry folks, I didn't intend to stir the pot. I'll re-explain this over the air from time to time.

Answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

Vaccinations for COVID-19 began being administered in the U.S. on Dec. 14, 2020. The quick rollout came a little more than a year after the virus was first identified in November 2019. The impressive speed with which vaccines were developed has also left a lot of people with a lot of questions. The questions range from the practical—how will I get vaccinated?—to the scientific—how do these vaccines even work?

Keep reading to discover answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions.

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