The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are recommending that certain immunocompromised people, including all cancer patients undergoing active treatment, get a third dose of the Covid-19 vaccine.

UCS patients undergoing treatment are advised to check with their oncologist at their next appointment to determine if the third vaccination is right for them.

CDC recommends that people with moderately to severely compromised immune systems receive an additional dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine at least 28 days after a second dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

This includes people who have:

  • Been receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
  • Received an organ transplant and are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
  • Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
  • Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
  • Advanced or untreated HIV infection
  • Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress your immune response

According to the CDC, people who are moderately to severely immunocompromised are especially vulnerable to COVID-19 because they are more at risk of serious, prolonged illness. The CDC cites studies that indicate:

  • Some immunocompromised people do not always build the same level of immunity after vaccination the way non-immunocompromised people do.
  • Fully vaccinated immunocompromised people have accounted for a large proportion of hospitalized “breakthrough cases,” suggesting that immunocompromised people are more likely to transmit the virus to household contacts.

The currently FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines are a new type of vaccine that does not use the live virus that causes COVID-19. Therefore, they can be safely administered to immunocompromised people, including some cancer patients, people with immunocompromising conditions, or people who take medications or therapies that suppress the immune system.

Please note that all cancer patients also should continue to take steps to reduce risk of exposure to COVID-19, including wearing a face mask around anyone outside your home, practicing social distancing, and avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces.

Utah Cancer Specialists does not offer vaccinations, at this time.
Patients are advised to speak with their oncologist before scheduling a
third vaccine.

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