RIDGEWOOD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — As more businesses in the Tri-State Area are requiring customers to show proof of vaccine, health officials are releasing new information about COVID booster shots.

Summer nights have people packing patios for dinner, but if you want to eat the popular Ridgewood restaurant It’s Greek To Me, you’ll have to show you have your shot.

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“This is not a political statement. This is our just making sure that our staff and our customers are safe,” restaurant owner Paul Vagianos told CBS2’s Jessica Layton.

Vagianos has owned It’s Greek To Me for 25 years.

There’s no rule requiring vaccinations for indoor dining in New Jersey like there is now in New York City, but Vagianos says at his restaurant, those who aren’t vaccinated are welcome outside only. That includes children under the age of 12.

“We’re trying to be accommodating to everyone,” he said.

COVID VACCINE

Wednesday, the Biden administration announced it’s recommending a booster shot for adults vaccinated with Pfizer or Moderna eight months after their second dose.

“It’s the best way to protect ourselves from new variants that could arise,” President Joe Biden said.

It follows a rise in the dangerous Delta variant and studies that show those initial vaccine doses become less effective as time goes on.

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“We will likely see in the future an increase of breakthrough hospitalizations,” Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy said.

Doctors remind us that even though there have been breakthrough infections in vaccinated people, they’re rarely serious.

Still, researchers at the Center for Discovery and Innovation in Nutley are among those trying to find effective medications for coronavirus.

Inside a high containment lab, scientists are actually growing the virus so they can use those concentrated samples and test potential new treatments.

“There are antivirals for influenza, there are antivirals for HIV, but we don’t really have novel antivirals for SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19, and this is part of the work that they’re doing,” said scientist Jose Mediavilla.

It’s important work, but it’s all still experimental. Scientists there and around the world remind us the only proven protection against the virus is the vaccine.

CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

If the FDA approves it, third doses for Pfizer and Moderna could begin in September.

Health officials say those who received the single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine will likely also need a booster, but they’re still waiting on data before they make the recommendation.

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CBS2’s Jessica Layton contributed to this report.

CBSNewYork Team