Third dose vaccine clinics already available in Finger Lakes

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — For those who are immunocompromised, the third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine is already available in the Finger Lakes region. Wednesday morning, these booster shots just became available in Monroe County.

Anyone who received their second COVID-19 vaccination more than 28 days ago, and who has moderate to severe immune system suppression is urged to get their third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Ontario County Deputy Public Health Director Kate Ott filled us in on who meets the requirements.

"So things like organ transplants," Ott said. "People who are taking medications to prevent rejection of transplants. People who have untreated HIV. People who are currently having cancer treatments whose immune systems just are not working well."

Ott says people with immunocompromised systems don’t make the same level of antibodies to vaccines, as people with healthy immune systems.

Jessica Gualano said she’s happy this third dose is finally available for those who need it.

"I suffer from asthma, and I’m taking some steroids for that," Gualano said. "I also travel a lot for work so I think it was important for me to go ahead, and get the booster shot now."

Ott says the third dose of the Pfizer vaccine which was given in this specific clinic, has been available in Ontario County since last week. So far a few dozen people have already registered, and come in for their vaccine. A shot that has a specific purpose.

"To sort of shake up their immune system a little bit so that it will take notice, and it will make some more antibodies for them, and give them more protection," Ott said.

Bill Thompson says he was anxious to get the shot, but more importantly, got it for his family.

"Well I guess you know not to be worried, you know. I mean I have a little more protection. I still have to be careful because you know you can still get it. I guess, and it looks like that anyway, and so I’m sure they’ll be much relieved," Thompson said.

The Ontario County Public Health Department will host another third dose clinic this Friday and will be offering the Moderna vaccine. The two-hour clinic will start at 2 p.m. Click here to check the criteria and schedule and appointment.