Southcoast Health offering third doses to immunocompromised residents
Dartmouth residents who are immunocompromised can receive a third dose of Pfizer or Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine through Southcoast Health.
The healthcare provider announced last week that it will administer the third shots to vulnerable people after the Centers for Disease Control recommended those with compromised immune systems receive an additional dose of the vaccines 28 days or later after their second shot.
“Immunocompromised individuals are especially vulnerable to Covid-19 due to increased risk of severe prolonged illness,” Southcoast Health spokesperson Shawn Badgley said. “Individuals who are immunocompromised may not have developed the same level of immunity after a two dose vaccine series compared to non-immunocompromised individuals.”
Third doses are offered at 49 State Rd. in Dartmouth on Wednesdays. Badgley said in the near future, Southcoast Health will offer evening and weekend appointments at the former VF Outlet.
Patients can also get a dose at Truesdale Health on President Avenue in Fall River on Tuesdays, and Rosebrook Southcoast Physician Services on Rosebrook Way in Wareham on Thursdays.
The third dose recommendation only applies to mRNA vaccines and not those who received the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. According to Badley, the CDC does not have enough data regarding the response to J & J in immunocompromised individuals and therefore, is not recommending a third dose at the present time.
A third dose of the covid-19 vaccines is not the same as a booster shot.
Immunocompromised residents interested in getting their third shot can sign up through their MyChart account or by visiting www.southcoast.org/covid-19-vaccine-scheduling.
The third dose clinics come as new Covid-19 cases continue to increase in Dartmouth.
This week, the state’s Department of Public Health reported 99 cases in the past two weeks.
According to state data, Dartmouth had a 14-day average daily incidence rate of 19.1 per 100,000 people and a 4.13% positivity rate — the highest rate since Dartmouth was classified “yellow” per the state’s Covid-19 risk reporting.
Despite the increase, Dartmouth is still classified as “gray” — the lowest risk level.
People aged 12 or older who live, work or study in Massachusetts are eligible to be vaccinated against Covid-19. Those over the age of 18 can sign up to receive any vaccine, but those ages 12 to 17 can only get the Pfizer vaccine.
Appointments and walk-ins remain available at the former Circuit City Mondays and Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Thursdays from 2 to 7 p.m. To schedule an appointment, visit vaxfinder.mass.gov.
Residents can also get a shot at CVS at 548 Dartmouth St., Stop & Shop at 25 Faunce Corner Road, and any of the Southcoast Health clinics.
The Covid-19 vaccine is free, and individuals do not need insurance or an ID to get the vaccine.
As of Aug. 26, the state reports that 56% of Dartmouth residents have received at least a first vaccination dose. That amounts to 20,697 people.
Half of all residents are fully vaccinated against the virus.