OHIO COUNTY, W. Va. (WTRF)

There is word that a new COVID vaccine may come out in the fall, created to target a specific variant like Omicron.

Health officials say that’s great news.

But they say people may be taking the wrong message from that.

Some people are now saying they want to wait until this variant-specific vaccine comes out to get their shot.

They may due for their next COVID vaccine dose or their booster, but they’re holding out until the new vaccine is available.

Ohio County Health Department Administrator Howard Gamble says waiting could be the wrong decision.

He says COVID is still around, and people are still getting it this summer.

“If you’re eligible for your primary or your booster series, get them now,” Gamble advises. “There’s no need to wait. Now is the best time. If you’re vaccinated now, you’re protected. You’re protected against the virus, and even more so, you’re protected against hospitalization and severe health outcomes. That’s where the vaccine really comes in and offers the most health protection.”

Gamble sees they’re seeing some slight ups and downs in case numbers, in his words, like a small roller coaster.

He reminds everyone it take two weeks from the time you get the shot until the protection takes effect.

They give free COVID vaccinations at the health department every weekday from 9 to 11 and 1 to 3.

Walk-ins are welcome; no appointment is necessary.