Immunocompromised BC residents will soon be notified to get a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The announcement was made by Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix on Monday afternoon.
Approximately 15,000 people are in the group of severely immunocompromised residents.
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This follows the National Advisory Committee on Immunization’s (NACI) recommendation last week.
In Canada, a “primary vaccine series” is two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, or AstraZeneca vaccines, or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
NACI noted that this additional dose is different from a booster shot, which restores immune protection that may have waned over time.
According to Dr. Henry, people in this immunocompromised group have less protection against the virus in comparison to the rest of the population, putting them at a higher risk for serious illness.
This group’s invitation to get a third dose will be sent out this week.
On top of this, approximately 300,000 people who are less severely immunocompromised due to certain medical conditions will also be given the option of getting a third dose.
Dr. Henry added that those who are severely immunocompromised and who get three doses of the COVID-19 vaccine still need to take care to avoid exposure to the vaccine by continuing to follow the public health orders that are currently in place.
With files from Zoe Demarco