New Orleans, LA

LDH follows CDC's recommendation on third doses of COVID-19 vaccine

Ashley Lideau

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NEW ORLEANS, LA - Louisiana Department of Health provides third doses of COVID-19 vaccine for residents with moderately or severely compromised immune systems. Additional doses or booster shots are not necessary for any other population at this time.

This decision was set according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's new recommendation. CDC suggests individuals with compromised immune systems receive another shot at least 28 days after their second dose of vaccine.

The additional dose may allow better protection against COVID-19 for people with weakened immune systems as they are more vulnerable to the risk of serious and prolonged illness. The urgency especially increases with the surging cases of highly contagious Delta variants.

The group of people recommended getting third doses are active cancer treatment patients, advanced HIV-AIDS and primary immunodeficiency patients, people with immunity issues due to receiving an organ transplant or stem cell transplant, and people with other conditions or medications that moderately or severely suppress immune systems.

While prescription from a physician is not needed, LDH advises people with those medical conditions to consult with a healthcare provider prior to receiving the third shot of Pfizer or Moderna. LDH has provided a medical risk factor self-attestation form for patients to complete and sign before their third vaccine appointment.

Research regarding the safety, efficacy, and risks of additional doses in immunocompromised people is still a work in progress. According to available reports this far, reactions after the third mRNA dose include fatigue and pain at the injection site. The symptoms were generally mild to moderate, similar to the ones after receiving the two-dose series.

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