Third dose of vaccine available for select individuals

A+Moderna+Covid-19+Vaccine+box+sits+on+a+table+on+Feb.+22.+Select+individuals+will+now+be+allowed+to+get+a+third+does+of+the+vaccine.

Ryan Ash

A Moderna Covid-19 Vaccine box sits on a table on Feb. 22. Select individuals will now be allowed to get a third does of the vaccine.

By Amrita Bhattacharyya, News Editor

A third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine is now available to select individuals in Champaign County. 

As the county sees an increase in delta variant cases, health officials are encouraging eligible individuals to consult with their medical provider to discuss additional protection through a third dose. 

It is estimated that less than 3% of patients will be eligible for a third dose of an mRNA vaccination, according to the Champaign-Urbana Public Health District.

Eligibility criteria is based on recommendations from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 

At least 28 days must pass after a second dose of Pfizer or Moderna and the same dose of the vaccine should be used for the third dose. 

In addition, the individual must be moderately to severely immunocompromised. This includes people who have advanced or untreated HIV infection, been receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood and a moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency.

According to Awais Vaid, deputy administrator and epidemiologist at CUPHD, the third dose is not a booster shot and not intended for the general public.

“What is available now is a third dose of the original shot, specifically recommended for people with compromised immune systems,” Vaid said in a press release. 

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