Virginia to provide third dose of Pfizer, Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for those with weak immune systems

The vaccines will be available as early as Aug. 14

FILE - In this Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021 file photo, vials for the Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines are displayed on a tray at a temporary clinic set up by the New Hampshire National Guard in the parking lot of a high school in Exeter, N.H. The Food and Drug Administration ruled that transplant recipients and other similarly immune-compromised patients can get a third dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. But the decision, late Thursday night, Aug. 12, 2021, offers an extra dose only to those high-risk groups -- not the general public. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa) (Charles Krupa, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

The Virginia Department of Health announced that the Commonwealth will make third doses of both the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for immunocompromised people this week.

The vaccines will be available as early as Aug. 14. The Washington Post reports that those in need of a third vaccine can get it the same way they got earlier shots —at pharmacies and healthcare providers, officials say.

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This move comes after the CDC updated its vaccination guidelines that recommend a third mRNA dose for those who have “significantly compromised immune systems.”

The FDA approved the use of an extra vaccine for those with weak immune systems on Thursday.

“This is important additional protection for people who have impaired immune systems,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Norm Oliver. “As COVID-19 cases rise across Virginia and the country, everyone who is eligible should get appropriately vaccinated as soon as they can.”

Officials said only Pfizer and Moderna are mRNA vaccines, so the FDA has not recommended an additional dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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About the Author:

Nicole Del Rosario joined WSLS 10 in August 2020.