GREENVILLE, N.C. — The Pitt County Health Department will begin offering an additional (third) dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to individuals who are immunocompromised, beginning on Wednesday, by appointment only.
Appointments can be made online at www.pittcountync.gov. This is the quickest and easiest way to obtain an appointment. Individuals, who need assistance making an appointment, can call 252-902-2449. Vaccines will be given daily (Monday-Friday; excluding holidays) at Pitt County Health Department located at 201 Government Circle, Greenville, NC.
An additional mRNA COVID-19 vaccine dose has already been authorized by the FDA and recommended by the CDC for moderately to severely immunocompromised people after an initial two-dose primary mRNA vaccine series. An additional (third) dose is given when a person’s immune response, after receiving a primary vaccine series, such as the first and second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, is likely to be insufficient.
“Individuals should not confuse this additional (third) dose with a booster shot,” said Dr. John Silvernail, Pitt County Health Director. “A booster is given when the initial immune response to a primary vaccine series may have decreased over time. This additional dose is not a booster. No booster doses are recommended at this time until further guidance is provided by the FDA and CDC.
“The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is planning to support booster shots for the general population, likely beginning the end of September.”
Immunocompromised individuals should talk to their healthcare provider about the need to get an additional (third) dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. It is recommended that individuals, who meet the CDC criteria, get an additional (third) dose of mRNA (Moderna or Pfizer) vaccine at least 28 days after getting a second dose of the vaccine. Individuals, who need a third dose, should consult with their healthcare provider about the best time to get the vaccine based on their current treatment plan. This is especially important for individuals who are getting ready to start or restart immunosuppressive treatment. Such treatment may lower the activity of the body’s immune system and reduce its ability to fight certain infections.
When possible, individuals should receive the same vaccine as they received initially. For example, if one received the Moderna vaccine two-shot series, their third dose should also be Moderna, if possible.
Individuals must attest that they meet the CDC criteria before an additional (third) dose will be administered.
At least one of the following criteria is required:
•Receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
•Received an organ transplant and taking medicine to suppress the immune system
•Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years or taking medicine to suppress the immune system
•Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
•Advanced or untreated HIV infection
•Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that suppress the body’s immune response.