Ahead of an anticipated FDA authorization for COVID-19 booster vaccines among certain individuals with weakened immune systems, the American Cancer Society has voiced full support behind efforts to offer cancer patients greater protection against COVID-19.
HIV and cancer patients, organ transplant recipients and those taking immunosuppressant drugs comprise about 2.7% of the U.S. adult population, and growing evidence has indicated the population doesn’t respond as well to COVID-19 vaccines, inducing lower levels of protective antibodies. Emerging data suggests an additional dose could boost the antibody response.
“As an organization dedicated to improving the lives of cancer patients and their families, the American Cancer Society strongly supports efforts to protect and improve the health and well-being of our community,” Dr. Karen E. Knudsen, CEO of the American Cancer Society and American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, told Fox News.
“The American Cancer Society urges further investigation as per whether booster vaccinations may improve COVID-19 protection amongst the immunocompromised population,” the statement continues in part.
ACS urged all those eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations to roll their sleeves and receive a vaccine, including cancer patients in consultation with a health care provider.
It is not immediately clear which immunocompromised patients will become eligible for a third dose, however reports have noted solid organ transplant recipients and patients with similar compromised immune systems could fall under the expanded authorization.
Fox News has requested comment from the American Transplant Foundation.