Dear Faculty and Staff:
On Monday, Duke Employee Occupational Health & Wellness will begin administering a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine to individuals who meet the criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for moderately to severely immunocompromised individuals.
Immunocompromised people do not always build the same level of immunity after vaccination as non-immunocompromised people, so they may benefit from an additional dose to ensure adequate protection against COVID-19 and are therefore being prioritized for additional dosing.
Faculty and staff who have the following conditions who have been fully vaccinated for at least 28 days may schedule an appointment for a third dose at the Duke Employee Vaccination Clinic located at Blue Devil Tower:
- Receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood
- Received an organ transplant and are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
- Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system
- Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
- Advanced or untreated HIV infection
- Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids or other drugs that may suppress your immune response.
Other risk factors for severe COVID-19 disease, such as age (65+), obesity, diabetes, or cardiopulmonary disease, are NOT included in the expansion of the vaccines’ Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) at this time.
We hope to receive approval to begin offering a booster dose of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) to health care workers beginning in late September. At that time, Duke health care workers who received the second dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine at least 8 months previously will be eligible to receive the booster shot. More information will be shared once we receive authorization.
At this time, we do not have an anticipated date when booster shots will be available for other patients, employees and the general public, but we will communicate that information broadly when it is available.
In the meanwhile, please continue to take every precaution to reduce the spread of infection. We have seen a rapid increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalized patients due to the high transmissibility of the Delta variant. Getting vaccinated is the best way to avoid potential severe illness related to COVID-19, and everyone should continue to wear masks indoors and in gatherings of people in close proximity.
Vice President, Administration, Duke University
Carol Epling, MD, MSPH
Assistant Professor in Family Medicine and Community Health
Gail Shulby, RN, MA, CPPS
Chief of Staff to the Executive Vice President, Duke Health
Cameron R. Wolfe, MBBS (Hons), MPH, FIDSA
Associate Professor of Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Duke Health
Co-Leaders of the COVID-19 Vaccination Planning Work Group