People with reduced immunity will be offered an extra vaccine dose in Belgium

People with reduced immunity will be offered an extra vaccine dose in Belgium
Credit: Belga

People in Belgium with reduced immunity will be invited next week for an additional vaccination against Covid-19 (Pfizer or Moderna), the vaccination task force announced in a statement on Thursday.

This third dose will now be offered to people over the age of 12 who are one of the following:

  • Have a congenital immune disorder,
  • Are on chronic dialysis,
  • Have inflammatory diseases taking immunosuppressive drugs (e.g. patients with Crohn's disease, rheumatoid arthritis),
  • Patients treated for cancer or who have received treatment for cancer in the last three years,
  • Patients who have undergone stem cell or organ transplants, including before surgery,
  • HIV-positive cases with a CD4 cell count of less than 200 per mm3 of blood.

Invitations will be sent out by post during the week of 13 September to those eligible. It is also possible to check whether you are on the list of patients concerned here.

The vaccination task force asks not to call general practitioners to check if you are on the list unless you have fallen ill with decreased immunity after 31 March 2021, as the health insurance companies will only rely on medical information up to that date.

The additional vaccines will mainly be administered in the vaccination centres still operating and priority will be determined by the age of the patient, with some exceptions.

This additional dose is part of the basic vaccination against Covid-19 (with 1 or 2 doses) for this group. It is therefore not a so-called booster, the Vaccination Task Force says.

"For the administration of such a booster to other groups in a subsequent phase of the vaccination campaign, there is currently no approval from the European Medicines Agency. At the same time, the Supreme Health Council is considering a scientific opinion on the basis of which further policy in our country will be determined," the Task Force adds.

The Brussels Times

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