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Cancer Patients and Other Severely Immunocompromised People Can Now Get COVID-19 Vaccination in Singapore

On July 28, the Expert Committee on Covid-19 Vaccination announced that those individuals who are severely immunocompromised can now be administered with a Covid-19 vaccine.

The group updated its recommendation to the public that the data sought by the committee is a promising development. It has shown that the vaccination is safe and can defend the immunocompromised individuals who are at risk of complications from the coronavirus against the infection and other severe diseases. We at straits times uncovered the supporting statements for this update, read as follows.

Straits times

New recommendation

According to the statement issued, the committee also recommended that the people who have healed from Covid-19 can be allowed to receive one dose of the vaccine under the national vaccination program at least three months after the day of the infection. This change is much shorter than the previous six months time frame.

Under the national vaccination program, both the vaccines of Modena and Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty are being offered in the program. The committee however stated that individuals that are immunocompromised should first receive a memo from their doctors about their sustainability to receive the vaccine before being allowed to be vaccinated.

Who is eligible?

The immunocompromised patients are as follows:

Patients who have active cancer undergoing treatment such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy, or immunotherapy, those who have received treatment from the previous three months, and those who are planning to get treatment in the next couple of months.

Patients who have received an organ or stem cell transplant in the scope of three months. 

Patients who are undergoing severe immunotherapy for conditions that are not related to cancer.

People living with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can also be vaccinated without showing a note, regardless of their CD4 count, according to the expert committee. T-cells are a type of white blood cell that aids in the destruction of bacteria, viruses, and other invading pathogens in the body. HIV affects a patient’s CD4 cells in the blood.

Where can they get it?

According to the committee, these immunocompromised patients can receive a vaccination in a healthcare center or at a local vaccination venue. However, the committee also warned that the effectiveness of the vaccines can be reduced to these individuals.

They said, “As such, it is important for them to take precautions against infection, including avoiding crowded places and practicing good hand hygiene.”

“Household members and persons around immunocompromised persons are urged to be vaccinated to reduce the risk of being infected and transmitting Covid-19 to them,” the committee added. 

The committee also added that the people with vulnerable conditions can now be administered with the vaccine as long as their condition is within the recommendations.

They also urged people who are qualified to get their vaccine due to the rising case of the Covid-19 variants.

Vulnerable individuals and people with comorbidities

Ever since the epidemic started, people with diseases that are related to the immunity system are at a greater risk of contracting the virus since it is highly contagious and the nature of the disease is very foreign to the experts at that time. 

People who are also at risk of having complications are older people, younger children, and individuals that are vulnerable to communicable diseases or chronic complications. In the national vaccination program of Singapore, they are the ones who are on top of the list that is eligible to receive the vaccine first.

People who have comorbidities such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, chronic obstructive bronchitis, pulmonary hypertension, kidney diseases, dementia, Alzheimer’s diseases, diabetes, pulmonary heart conditions, high blood pressure, Down syndrome, obesity, and liver problems are all vulnerable to the complications of the Covid-19 virus. 

Conclusion

It is only a matter of time before the vaccines could be available for all individuals whether they have other diseases or not. We at AsiaOne just hope that this pandemic will be over so that individuals with comorbidities have less of disease to worry about.