An additional dose of COVID-19 vaccine is being recommended for those with certain medical conditions that compromise their immune system’s functionality.
Jefferson County Health Department’s director, Health Officer Gail Scott said the third dose of the vaccine is now recommended for anyone over age 12 with certain medical conditions that compromise their immune system.
“At this time, additional doses are not yet recommended for non-immunocompromised people, or for those who received the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, though this may change in the future as additional data regarding vaccine efficacy is continuously analyzed,” she said in a press release.
Individuals with weakened immune systems might not develop adequate immunity following vaccination. These individuals also are more likely to develop serious illness with COVID-19 and might spread the virus to others in their home.
Adding an additional dose to the series for immuno-compromised people could help better protect those most vulnerable to COVID-19.
The additional dose is not a booster, Scott said, noting it is another shot used when the primary vaccine series is likely to be insufficient.
The additional COVID-19 vaccine dose should be administered at least 28 days after completing the initial series. Adding an additional dose to the series for immunocompromised people could help protect those most vulnerable for COVID-19.
So far in Jefferson County there have been 8,740 cases of the virus since the pandemic began last year.
Over the past two weeks, the rolling average number of daily new cases of COVID has increased by 88%, according to Johns Hopkins researchers.
Nearly all hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 now come from people who are not vaccinated.
Vaccinations also were recently offered at the state fair last week, leading to 608 vaccine doses being administered, according to the Associated Press. About 53% of the state’s total population is fully vaccinated.
Who should get the dose:
Those who qualify for the additional dose include people 12 years of age and older with medical conditions, including:
• Active treatment for solid tumor and hematologic malignancies
• Receipt of solid-organ transplant and taking immuno-suppressive therapy
• Receipt of CAR-T-cell or hematopoietic stem cell transplant (within two years of transplantation or taking immuno-suppression therapy)
• Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
• Advanced or untreated HIV infection
• Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids (≥20mg prednisone or equivalent per day), alkylating agents, antimetabolites, transplant-related immuno-suppressive drugs, cancer chemotherapeutic agents classified as severely immuno-suppressive, tumor-necrosis (TNF) blockers, and other biologic agents that are immuno-suppressive.