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COVID-19 booster recommended for Kansans age 16 and older
Coronavirus breaking news

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment will adopt the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s new booster recommendation and has authorized all COVID-19 vaccine providers to begin administering Pfizer-BioNTech booster shots to eligible adolescents ages 16 and 17.  

“The vaccine is safe, effective and free and remains the best way to protect yourself from serious illness,” stated Janet Stanek, acting KDHE secretary. “With the rise in COVID-19 cases across the state and the rise of the Omicron variant, we encourage all eligible Kansans to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and booster shot.” 

Kansans who are at least 16 years old and have met the 6-month time period following the primary vaccination series for the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine, or who had their Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least two months ago, are now eligible to get the COVID-19 booster dose.  

Available data show that all three of the COVID-19 vaccines approved or authorized in the United States continue to be highly effective in reducing risk of severe disease, hospitalization, and death. Vaccination remains the best way to protect yourself and reduce the spread of the virus and help prevent new variants from emerging. To find a COVID-19 vaccine clinic visit 

Statewide statistics

As of 9 a.m. Friday, Kansas has had 486,109 COVID-19 cases over the course of the pandemic, resulting in 16,217 hospitalizations and 6,830 statewide deaths. There were 3,877 new cases, 130 new hospitalizations and 62 new deaths reported since Wednesday. These include one new death in Stafford County.

Area cases

Here are the total cases for area counties as of 9 a.m. Friday, with the change since Dec. 8:

• Barton 4,507 (+52)

• Ellsworth 1,539 (+11)

• Pawnee 1,593 (+1)

• Rice 1,670 (+26)

• Rush 575 (+2)

• Russell 1,393 (+10)

• Stafford 800 (+9)

Area deaths

Here are the death totals for area counties as of 9 a.m. Friday, with any change since Wednesday.

• Barton 70

• Ellsworth 31

• Pawnee 21

• Rice 16 

• Rush 16

• Russell 34

• Stafford 22 (+1)


• As of 9 a.m. Friday, Barton County has reported 157 hospitalizations attributed to COVID-19 over the course of the pandemic, an increase of three since Wednesday. There was one new intensive care unit (ICU) admission, bringing the total to 31. To date, 106 discharged patients have been reported to KDHE, an increase of one since Wednesday. The median age of patients admitted so far in December is 58.

• Pawnee County has reported 69 hospital admissions, 15 ICU admissions and 47 discharged patients to date. These numbers have not changed since Nov. 29.

• Stafford County has reported 31 hospital admissions, an increase of two since Wednesday, and 12 ICU admissions, an increase of one. The number of discharged patients reported to date was unchanged at 19.