Knox County Health Department Now Offering 3rd Vaccine Doses to Immunocompromised Residents

What You Need to Know to Get A 3rd Vaccine.


Knox County- Knox County officials are now offering third doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines to people who are immunocompromised due to new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“We continue our fight against COVID-19 and its variants. With case counts increasing over the last few weeks, we want to provide the most protection possible from vaccination, particularly to one of our most vulnerable populations, the immunocompromised,” Michele Gabriel, Public Health Administrator states.

The 3rd doses should not be confused with booster doses. According to the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) the administering of booster shoots may begin as early as the week of September 20, 2021.

The purpose of the additional 3rd dose is to strengthen the immune response when the initial immune response to the primary two-dose vaccine series is likely to be insufficient, according to ACIP.

Who Needs an Additional COVID Vaccine? The CDC is recommending that moderately to severely immunocompromised people receive an additional dose. This includes people who have:

  • Been receiving active cancer treatment for tumor or cancers of the blood

  • Received an organ transplant and are taking medicine to suppress the immune system

  • Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system

  • Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrick syndrome)

  • Advanced or untreated HIV infection

  • Active treatment with high- dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress your immune response

People should talk to their healthcare provider about their medical condition, and whether getting an additional dose is appropriate for them.

Those seeking an extra shot in Knox County will not need to provide proof of a weakened immune system but must bring their vaccination card. Third dose vaccines will be offered at ALL Knox County Unified Command Vaccine Clinics and events. Appointments are not required, but a third dose must be given at least 28 days after the second dose, states Gabriel. The additional vaccine dose should be the same as the initial two-dose vaccine.

Credible sources for information about COVID-19 include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention www.cdc.gov and Illinois Department of Public Health www.dph.illinois.gov. For general questions about COVID-19, call the hotline at 1-800-889-3931, email dph.sick@illinois.gov or call your Knox County Health Department at 309-344-2224 or email covid19@knoxcountyhealth.org.

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