Effective immediately, all adults in Massachusetts can get an additional shot after their waiting period has elapsed.

Sarah DiPerri, a nurse in Arlington, draws up a dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 booster at Park Avenue Health Center. Jessica Rinaldi / The Boston Globe

Massachusetts is expanding COVID-19 vaccine booster eligibility to all adults, joining a growing list of states that are jumping federal guidelines.

Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration announced Thursday morning that, “effective immediately,” all Massachusetts residents over the age of 18 can get a booster shot six months after receiving the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or two months after getting the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Officials noted that booster shots are available at more than 1,000 locations in Massachusetts, searchable on the state’s website.

With the move, Massachusetts is jumping ahead of the current federal guidelines for boosters, which recommend the additional Pfizer or Moderna shots for a broad and loosely defined group, including individuals over the age of 65, certain workers, and people with medical conditions that make them vulnerable to COVID-19 (all individuals over the age of 18 who have gotten the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been eligible for a booster after two months).

The Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are scheduled to discuss — and expected to recommend — expanding booster eligibility to all adults who got the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines this week.


However, a growing list of states — including Rhode Island and Maine — have jumped the gun and begun offering boosters to all adults, amid concerns about still-elevated COVID-19 rates and waning vaccine effectiveness, as both the winter season and holidays approach. Officials also noted that the move would clear up confusion around who, exactly, is eligible for the boosters.

According to the Baker administration, over 94 percent of Massachusetts adults have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and over 4.8 million — or 81 percent —of the population is fully vaccinated. Over 800,000 residents have gotten a booster.

Officials noted that current CDC recommendations allow individuals to get a different COVID-19 vaccine as a booster than their initial shots — otherwise known as mixing and matching. Officials said residents with questions about which booster is right for them should ask their health care provider for advice.