COVID-19 Information: What LGBTQ+ People Need to Know

LGBTQ+ people are likely worried about the potential impact of COVID-19 on their health. People at particular risk should talk to their health providers about their options for protecting themselves from infection.

Updated May 20, 2022

Who should get a booster vaccine and/or fourth dose, according to the CDC?

  • Boosters are recommended for people who received the second dose of Pfizer or Moderna more than 5 months ago unless imunocompromised, then a booster is recommended after 3 months. If you received the Johnson and Jonson shot more than 2 months ago a booster is recommended.
  • The FDA and CDC recommend 2 boosters for people who are 50 year and older, 12 years and older with a weakened immune system, who received Johnson and Johnson single dose and 1st booster dose. The second booster dose should be 4 months after the 1st booster dose.
  • New research suggests that people who are 12-65 years of age who aren’t at high risk of contracting COVID-19 should wait 8 weeks between the first and second dose to increase protection.
  • Updates on new variants– omicron subvariant BA.2 variant spreads far more easily than previous variants before it. The best thing that public health officials strongly recommend is to get vaccinated from COVID-19 and also prevent the likelihood of new variants emerging. People who are more up to date with their COVID-19 vaccines are less likely to get COVID-19, in contrast to people who are unvaccinated.

Talk to your healthcare provider about whether getting a COVID-19 third and/or booster dose is appropriate for you.

COVID-19 Vaccine Recommendations for Children and Teens

The CDC recommends children ages 5 and up to receive the first and second doses of the COVID-19 Vaccine. CDC Studies have shown that children can get very sick from COVID-19 even if they do not have underlying health conditions. 

Children who are ages 5-17 can receive the Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine. This is the only vaccine authorized currently for these age groups. To learn more about the recommendations for COVID-19 Vaccinations for children and teens  you can visit the CDC website here.

FDA authorizes Pfizer booster shots for kids ages 5-11.

Booster Shots are critical in providing protection against COVID-19 especially with new cases and variants on the rise.  FDA Studies have shown that with a booster shot, children ages 5-11 years old are more likely to not get severely sick, or hospitalized.

With the  recent omicron variant in the US,  more kids are becoming sick with COVID-19,some even hospitalized and  experiencing long term side effects even after recovery. Experts are strongly recommending parents to get their children the booster shot, which would strengthen their immunity, especially in the wake of the recent surge of COVID-19.For more information from the FDA about this recent authorization for the Pfizer booster click here


Why are booster doses important?

Vaccines and boosters are significantly effective at preventing serious illness and death from all known variants of COVID-19. Boosters are especially critical in stopping the spread. People who have received a booster dose have a much lower risk of infection, hospitalization, and death due to COVID-19, as compared to people who have only completed their primary series of vaccines.

  • With the booster dose, effectiveness against hospitalization with Omicron is 150% that of the effectiveness without a booster. This is evidence that booster vaccines are critical in preventing serious illness for all people aged 12+.
  • For people 50+, rates of hospitalization due to COVID-19 are roughly four (4) times lower among those who have received their booster dose, compared to those who have received only their primary series of vaccines (e.g., two (2) doses of an mRNA vaccine).

What should I do if I test positive for COVID-19?

  • If you tested positive, regardless of vaccination status or presence of symptoms, stay at home and isolate yourself from others for a minimum of five (5) days.
  • If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, talk with your provider to see if you can end isolation after 5 days. If you need a referral to an LGBTQ-affirming provider, contact [email protected] or [email protected]
  • If you did not experience COVID-19 symptoms, you may end isolation 5 days after your positive result. For the first ten (10) days after a positive test, wear a mask around others and isolate if symptoms develop

What should I do if I was exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19?

  • If you were exposed to COVID-19 (i.e. in contact with someone who has COVID-19), the CDC’s recommended next steps differ based on your vaccination status.
  • For the first ten (10) days after exposure, everyone (regardless of vaccination status) should wear a mask around others, watch for COVID-19 symptoms, and isolate if symptoms develop.
  • If you are up-to-date on your COVID-19 vaccinations (i.e. you have had all the vaccine and booster doses you are eligible for), you do not need to quarantine after an exposure. Five (5) or more days after exposure, get tested for COVID-19.
  • If you are not up-to-date on your COVID-19 vaccinations, quarantine at home for at least 5 days after exposure and then get tested for COVID-19.

What does it mean to quarantine? To isolate?

Quarantine and isolation are different. Quarantine is meant to stop the potential spread in the instance of exposure. Isolation is intended for confirmed positive cases. The CDC outlines some steps for what to do for both quarantine and isolation here and updated guidelines from the CDC can be found here.

  • If you have come into contact with someone who had tested positive for COVID-19, Quarantine for at least 5 days, and get tested.
  • Wear a well fitting mask if you are around other people at home.
  • Isolation is for at least 5 days if you test positive, wear a mask at home if you live with other people.
  • Isolation ends when symptoms subside after 24 hours without use of medication.

What else is Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center doing?

Our organization prioritizes health promotion and health equity for the LGBT community, so we are taking COVID-19 seriously and are taking the following precautionary measures:

  • Visitors to Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center will no longer need to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination, starting Monday, May 16. This decision is grounded in extensive research and guided by community feedback about the impact of the center’s vaccination requirement, which went into effect in February. The safety of visiting community members has always been a priority, which is why we will continue to require all visitors to wear masks. The pandemic may be subsiding, but the reality is that new variants raise enough concern to maintain this particular policy.

  • Unsure if you are eligible for a booster vaccine? Scroll up to the section "Who should get a booster vaccine and/or third dose, according to the CDC?".
  • All staff members have been fully vaccinated and boosted since the center reopened its doors to the community in September 2021.
  • Most programs are available through virtual formats.