Adults living with other adults that are immunosuppressed should be prioritised for the Covid-19 vaccine
- 29 Mar 2021
The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) have published advice recommending that adults who are living with adults that are immunosuppressed should be prioritised for the Covid-19 vaccine along with those in group 6 and therefore should be invited for vaccination in the first phase. This will include family and others who share a household with people with kidney transplants and other kidney patients with severe immunosuppression. The advice is based on emerging data which suggests lower protection from Covid-19 in vaccinated adults who are immunosuppressed. There is also evidence, however that vaccination among the general population reduces transmission of the virus. Therefore, vaccinating household members should offer important protection to people who may have had a weaker response to the Covid-19 vaccine.
Fiona Loud said "We have been receiving an increasing number of queries from kidney patients who are concerned about what they have read on the response of immunosuppressed people to the first dose of the Covid vaccine. Understandably, they are feeling extremely anxious that vaccination doesn’t offer the hoped for protection, particularly now that shielding is pausing and many people will be returning to the workplace and other public places. We had raised these concerns with Government and policy makers and urged them to analyse the data as it becomes available and issue recommendations that maximise protection for kidney patients. We therefore very much welcome today’s advice from JCVI, whilst also looking to them for advice on timing of the second dose which early data suggests leads to a much improved immune response."
Kidney Care UK have asked for clarification on how household members can book their vaccination and we will share via our online guidance as soon as we can.
JCVI’s recommendation will be taken forward by NHS England and the advice has also been shared with those leading the Covid-19 vaccination programmes in each of the 4 nations of the UK. We will share updates on how this advice is implemented in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as soon as it becomes available.
(Update 14 April: The Welsh government have announced the same for people living in Wales - full story on BBC News website)
Letters between the Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock and Professor Wei Shen Lim at the Joint Committee on Vaccines and Immunisation (JCVI) relating to this advice have been published
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