As COVID-19 cases rise due to the Delta variant, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has approved third dose vaccinations for patients whose immune systems are compromised moderately to severely. The CDC hopes the additional shot will boost immune protection for those who are at a higher risk of complications from the coronavirus.
Renal Associates of West Michigan, P.C. (RAWM) is reaching out to its patients who meet the CDC’s criteria for the third dose vaccinations to share the news. You may schedule an appointment for the third dose at Meijer, Costco, CVS, and Walgreens to name a few in the West Michigan area.
Currently, only those immunocompromised patients who received two doses of Pfizer or Moderna qualify for the protective third dose. Patients who received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine are not eligible at this time, per CDC guidance.
Qualifying patients include those who:
- Are receiving treatments for tumors or blood cancers
- Are taking immunosuppressing medications, such as those taken after receiving an organ transplant
- Are within two years of receiving CAR-T therapy or a stem cell transplant
- Have primary immunodeficiencies, or rare genetic disorders that prevent the immune system from working properly
- Have advanced or untreated HIV
- Are taking high-dose corticosteroids (more than 20 milligrams of prednisone or its equivalent daily) or other drugs that may suppress immune response
Certain chronic medical conditions may also qualify, such as chronic kidney disease or diabetes.
The CDC recommends patients get the same manufacturer’s vaccine as their first two doses: Pfizer or Moderna. According to the CDC’s recommendation for immunocompromised patients, the third dose must be given at least four weeks after the second dose.
Health officials are preparing to roll out COVID-19 booster shots in the United States in September 2021. Every detail is not yet available, but according to a plan, all U.S. adults who received a two-dose vaccine would be eligible for an additional shot of the Pfizer (FDA released Comirnaty) or Moderna vaccine eight months from when they received their second shot.