Third COVID-19 shot recommended for certain people

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CHAMPAIGN-URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) – As the delta variant surges across the country and world, health officials are looking at ways to better protect you and your family. One of those ways is with a 3rd COVID-19 vaccine.

“Now, with the third dose, the expectation is that it will significantly boost their immune system, so they will be a lot better protected,” Awais Vaid, with Champaign-Urbana Public Health District, said,

This third shot is only for certain people. The FDA and CDC say if you have been getting cancer treatments, got an organ or stem cell transplant, have moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency like DiGeorge syndrome, advanced or untreated HIV infection, or have active treatment with high dose corticosteroids or other drugs that suppress your immune response.

Health officials said this is a small percentage of the population. They said it has not been approved for everyone.

“This is not a booster, and for people who have been waiting for a booster they will have to wait a little bit longer. Because there is an expectation that the CDC and FDA will be approving an actual true booster within the next month or so, and that will be eligible for every one that has received the vaccines,” he said.

They say if you fall into one of these categories, the original doses weren’t as effective.

“It really boosts that immune response to where it should have been with the two doses for someone without the immune compromised system. So, absolutely, it does bring them to the same level as if they were non-immune compromised,” he said.

Health care providers are ready to help. Vaid said, all the major hospitals in the Champaign-Urbana area have prepared to give this third dose.

“We are actively planning this week to send out information to all people who are in this small group of patients, and we’ll be able to tell everyone to come in and get this third dose,” Robert Healy, Chief Quality Officer for Carle Hospital, said.

Only Pfizer and Moderna have been approved for this third jab. Health care officials said if you have any questions, call your health care provider, and they can help answer them.

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