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The Elusive Third Primary Vaccine - not the Booster

(203 Posts)
FannyCornforth Fri 05-Nov-21 10:05:52

Hello
I know that there is a thread already about the Booster; but I felt that another thread devoted to the ever elusive third primary vaccine may be helpful.

The third primary dose is apparently valuable for those who are severely immune suppressed.

It is in addition to the booster.

My main question is - has anyone actually had it?

I’ve spoken to a variety of HCPs recently, and none of them have even heard of it sad

Thank you 🙏

maddyone Fri 05-Nov-21 10:10:02

I can’t help you Fanny, but I’m happy to bump your thread so someone else might see it and be able to help.

FannyCornforth Fri 05-Nov-21 10:13:25

Thank you Maddy there’s quite a bit of information (mainly about the lack of information) on the booster thread (Marydoll thanks) but it would be great to hear from someone who can actually help, or even better, from someone who has had a positive outcome

maddyone Fri 05-Nov-21 10:27:41

Yes indeed. Hope someone can help.

dragonfly46 Fri 05-Nov-21 10:51:49

I know someone who has been told he must have it but is finding it difficult to get as nobody seems to know about it. He has blood cancer and has low immunity so the hospital have told he he is due the third vaccine but he has had no notifications as to where and how.

growstuff Fri 05-Nov-21 10:55:43

Sorry I can't help, but I'm posting the link from Kidney Care UK again.

www.kidneycareuk.org/news-and-campaigns/news/lack-clarity-around-3rd-dose-immunosuppressed-leaves-thousands-risk/

It would appear that the lack of information is quite widespread. In England, the CCGs are responsible for their own regions, so it might be worth trying to contact somebody there.

Marydoll Fri 05-Nov-21 11:05:55

Imbumping it Fanny, I will be back later.

AcornFairy Fri 05-Nov-21 11:10:16

I had the “third primary” covid vaccine a week ago. This third pre-booster vaccine is being made available to those whose immunity is severely compromised.

I have leukaemia (CLL) for which I am having ongoing treatment under the supervision of haematologists. The cancer has suppressed my immune system and I have weekly immunoglobulin infusions to help deal with that. It seems as if the science is saying that probably/possibly the 2 initial jabs (AstraZeneca) I had have done little to protect me against covid, hence the third primary jab (this time of Pfizer) as a precaution.

I am being told that I will be entitled to my booster jab in 6 months time, but I don’t know which brand this will be. I don’t know if anyone does! Because covid 19 is novel there seems to be no one who knows the whole story, but that is mine. I hope it helps.

By the way, in order to keep abreast of all this I did have to be pretty pro-active. At first the hospital was obviously struggling with what was required of them and could not answer my questions. Then I got 3 almost identical letters from different departments plus a letter from the NHS. There is so much hard work going on out there but too often the right hand doesn’t know what the left is doing.

FannyCornforth Fri 05-Nov-21 11:13:00

Thanks growstuff
Dragonfly it’s unbelievable. No one seems to know anything. The more that you look into it, the worse it appears

FannyCornforth Fri 05-Nov-21 11:15:13

Thank you AcornFairy, and well done you for being so knowledgeable and proactive 🥇

Summerlove Fri 05-Nov-21 11:26:40

My understanding is that right now, the third dose, and booster, are the identical vaccine that was given for 1&2. Meaning no formula change.

Eventually the booster will have different formulations like the flu shot.

I feel that a lot of the confusion has come around using third dose and booster interchangeably for a lot of people

Summerlove Fri 05-Nov-21 11:27:05

And yes, I have family who have received a third dose and will receive a booster in six months

growstuff Fri 05-Nov-21 11:51:41

Summerlove

My understanding is that right now, the third dose, and booster, are the identical vaccine that was given for 1&2. Meaning no formula change.

Eventually the booster will have different formulations like the flu shot.

I feel that a lot of the confusion has come around using third dose and booster interchangeably for a lot of people

There are two major differences:

1 The third shot can (and should) be given earlier.

2 People still need to have a booster.

It needs to be Pfizer.

The confusion has come about because GPs haven't been informed what's happening and, if they did know, haven't always informed their staff. It's a management/communication issue.

Lincslass Fri 05-Nov-21 11:57:11

FannyCornforth

Hello
I know that there is a thread already about the Booster; but I felt that another thread devoted to the ever elusive third primary vaccine may be helpful.

The third primary dose is apparently valuable for those who are severely immune suppressed.

It is in addition to the booster.

My main question is - has anyone actually had it?

I’ve spoken to a variety of HCPs recently, and none of them have even heard of it sad

Thank you 🙏

On admission to hospital, my DD was given it.

Lincslass Fri 05-Nov-21 11:57:47

Then will have a further booster in 6 months.

Summerlove Fri 05-Nov-21 12:17:32

Thanks growstuff I had hit post too soon.

AcornFairy Fri 05-Nov-21 12:23:06

growstuff Summerlove
Yes, as I understand it the 3rd primary dose has to be Pfizer; throwing the efficacy of AstraZenica for the immuno-compromised into doubt.

And yes, it’s definitely a management/communication issue; understandable under all the pressure out there right now.
I didn’t, and still haven’t, had any communication from my GP. All our situations are subtly different but my GP surgery is in special measures and under extreme pressure, so that was why I decided to do a bit of metaphorical leg work myself.

While it shouldn’t really be like that, sadly that is how it has become in this day and age. We all need to help ourselves as best we can and be kind to others.

iambutterflysarah Fri 05-Nov-21 12:32:13

Here in the U.S., Pfizer “booster” is same formula/same dosage as first two shots and is available six months after shot #2, regardless of other underlying conditions.

Moderna halved the dosage for “booster” unless immuno-compromised. Eventually read online that this was to save product for distribution to other countries. If immuno-compromised, third dose of Moderna is same dosage as first two shots.

Individual pharmacists not always clear on what constitutes immuno-compromising conditions, unfortunately. But i eventually received full dose shot #3 on Tuesday, November 2. I have been eligible since September 20.

growstuff Fri 05-Nov-21 12:32:43

The trouble is that some people aren't always in a position to help themselves. People have posted on here (and elsewhere) because they're worried. Many people on GN live on their own and don't have people they can discuss worries with. To be fair to GP practices, I know they're under a tremendous amount of pressure and haven't been well-informed either.

I think one of the main problems is that people have lost confidence in the government's handling of the pandemic. Polls are showing that an increasing number think the government isn't doing a good job. Leaving people to do the best they can isn't the basis for good public health. A combination of loss of confidence and poor communication means people are worried and the most worried are often the most vulnerable. It wouldn't take much for the CCGs to have a good FAQs page on their website just to reassure people. GPs could link to the page to save people from being blanked when they ring up and wasting receptionists' time.

Rosalyn69 Fri 05-Nov-21 12:34:59

I have had three Pfizer. I have no idea why.

HarlemShuffle Fri 05-Nov-21 12:58:55

I had a letter from my consultant to say that he had written to my GP practice to say I needed the third primary vaccine now and then a booster in six months and that they would contact me.

The only contact so far has been a myriad of text messages urging me to get a booster. I've checked with all the places in my city that are doing vaccinations (the GP isn't and never has) and none of them are doing the third primary.

It's another shambles, I'm afraid.

Jaxjacky Fri 05-Nov-21 13:10:54

Yes, friend with blood cancer had his two weeks ago.

growstuff Fri 05-Nov-21 13:33:30

HarlemShuffle

I had a letter from my consultant to say that he had written to my GP practice to say I needed the third primary vaccine now and then a booster in six months and that they would contact me.

The only contact so far has been a myriad of text messages urging me to get a booster. I've checked with all the places in my city that are doing vaccinations (the GP isn't and never has) and none of them are doing the third primary.

It's another shambles, I'm afraid.

If you read the page from Kidney Care UK, the advice is to have the booster now (if it's Pfizer, it's the same jab) and sort out another booster in six months.

Calmlocket Fri 05-Nov-21 14:09:23

www.nhsinform.scot/covid-19-vaccine/the-vaccines/coronavirus-covid-19-third-dose-vaccination

Missedout Fri 05-Nov-21 14:24:17

My cynical theory is that, as 'Freedom' day approached, various organisations supporting (immunosuppressed) vulnerable patients did a bit of lobbying and there was a dim realisation by the government that those who were unlikely to have mounted an antibody response to the vaccines had not been considered.

All the government could come up with (after consultation) was - give the vulnerable another dose of vaccine. I understand there is some evidence that this may help some of us to make some antibodies but reliable data are not yet available.

So with careful forethought, letters from the Health Minister went to all identified as vulnerable to tell them they were to be given the 3rd Primary dose - preferably a mRNA vaccine. Letters were also sent to GPs and Consultants and the 'Green Book' updated. Job done! There has been little consultation and planning for the roughly 500,000 of us immunocompromised and who have needed to shield since spring 2020 - well, how hard can it be (we are expensive to treat anyway)?

I could write several paragraphs on the processes I have been through to get my 3rd Primary dose. It became a mission even though I don't think it will help me.

I eventually sent an email to the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) for my Clinical Commissioning Group area and received a reply requesting information. I heard no more after replying but I was sent an appointment for the 3rd primary dose about a week later.

There are many frail and sick patients among us who are unable to fend for themselves. They are reliant on the NHS to do the right thing for them. In these difficult times, they need advocates. Perhaps PALS would be a good place to start, I found emails seem to be the most effective.

I'm lucky, although vulnerable, I'm not frail and am capable following up leads using technology and bloody-mindedness. I shouldn't have to do this and hope that fellow sufferers get the help they need. I'm also aware that being immunocompromised does not just affect the older members of the population. It must be harder still for the young to get all the right vaccinations and boosters as they don't fall into the 'right' vaccincation age groups.

Like AcornFairy I have regular infusions of immunoglobulins, so I am provided with antibodies made by those generous enough to be blood plasma donors. With luck, some Covid antibodies may be appearing in my infusions soon. I want to check if I have any protection so intend to take a private Covid antibody test soon.

I'd just like to go shopping and have a meal out, cautiously of course.