Add’l vaccine shot for immunocompromised? CDC to consider

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Next week, a federal advisory panel is anticipated to study if healthcare workers will be permitted to provide additional vaccine doses against COVID-19 for immunocompromised patients.

This, despite that the leading health officials in the country cleared that an additional vaccine shot is not necessary.

The consideration followed Pfizer-BioNTech’s announcement last week that it will apply for regulatory approval for its third vaccine shot as the spread of the more contagious delta variant is continually causing concern.

The 2 to 4 percent of the US adults will be the focus of the advisory panel next week. They have fragile immune systems as some have received organ transplants, cancer treatments, and have conditions like HIV and leukemia.

The clinical considerations are set to be tackled in a July 22 meeting of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices that handles vaccine recommendations to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston’s transplant-medicine physician Camille Kotton, who is also part of the advisory committee, said she could not give a comment on guidelines change possibilities regarding the additional doses.

She said there were several patients who requested a booster shot. The Food and Drug Administration, however, only authorized two doses of Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech. A single dose was meanwhile authorized for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Last week, Pfizer-BioNTech said they want to secure an FBA regulatory approval as they expect that some additional shots will be needed by those who already completed the two doses, The Washington Post reported.

But the request for regulatory approval will not be taken up in the discussion next week as it will only focus on clinical considerations for the vaccines.