CVS – Phoenix readies to dole out 3rd COVID-19 vaccine doses
Christ said providers should attempt to match the additional dose type to the two-dose series that person received, but using the other vaccine for the additional dose is permitted if circumstances warrant. Pfizer is currently the only vaccine approved for anyone ages 12 to 18.
Dr. Michael White, the chief medical officer for Valleywise Health in Phoenix, said Valleywise’s medical center and community health clinics have begun offering booster shots to the immunocompromised.
“We have begun to be able to offer that to our patients that fall within that category,” he said during a Wednesday news conference. “We have seen some. I can’t give you exact numbers but certainly the requests are starting to come in.”
While information about boosters for the general population is slow to roll in, White estimated the prioritization would look similar to the initial vaccine rollout at the end of 2020, which started with the elderly and frontline workers, as well as those with high-risk illnesses.
But, White said, the necessity of a third dose should not be alarming, as boosters are needed for most vaccines and the flu shot is encouraged annually.
“We’re continuing to learn and learn more about how these vaccines are, the longevity of these vaccines and how effective they are,” he said. “So, this is something that is not uncommon that we would have to do something like this for these types of viruses in the future.”
In addition to Valleywise clinics and other community health clinics across the Phoenix metro area, CVS Health and Walgreens are offering third doses as well. Spokespersons for both pharmacies confirmed Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are available to the immunocompromised following Friday’s announcement.
Patients will need to bring their vaccination cards and attest to their immunocompromised status. Registration can be done online, where patients can identify a nearby pharmacy offering their preferred vaccine.
The same goes for the Vincere Cancer Center, which has partnered with the city of Phoenix since the start of the pandemic to offer free testing and vaccinations through pop-up events and mobile clinics. The center, along with the city, is planning a big event Friday at the John F. Long Family Services Center, 3454 N. 51st Ave. in Phoenix.
Third doses will be offered, as well as first and second, according to Dr. Vushalee Shukla, co-founder of Vincere Cancer Center, who lauded both CDC announcements.