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France to give third Covid vaccine dose to those with immunodeficiency

The extra dose will be available for people on dialysis and people who have had organ transplants, among others

The plan of giving three Covid-19 vaccine doses could be extended further to other patients with immunity issues as well as family members and carers of immunocompromised patients Pic: torstensimon / Pixabay

France has approved giving a third dose of a Covid-19 vaccine to certain patients who are “severely immunocompromised”. 

This covers patients who have had organ transplants, recent bone marrow transplant patients, patients on dialysis, and patients with autoimmune diseases undergoing strong immunosuppressive treatment such as anti-CD20 or antimetabolites. 

The decision was announced by the Direction générale de la Santé (DGS), an arm of the French health ministry, on April 11. 

The patients who are eligible for the third dose will receive either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccine. 

They should receive the third dose four weeks after the second, or as soon as possible if it has already been more than four weeks since their second dose. 

The DGS stated that this schedule could be extended at a later date to include non-dialysis chronic kidney disease patients, cancer patients and autoimmune disease patients on other immunosuppressive treatments.

It also said that family members, those living under the same roof and carers of people suffering from severe immunocompromisation should become eligible for a Covid-19 vaccination “in the near future”, if they are not already due to their age and/or health. 

Read more:

Do I still need a vaccination after I have had Covid-19?

How will suspension of Johnson & Johnson Covid vaccine impact France?

Pfizer vaccine production to start in France this week

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