Fourth vaccine dose available to vulnerable populations in North Dakota

Pfizer fourth dose
Pfizer fourth dose(MGN)
Published: Mar. 30, 2022 at 5:07 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The FDA has authorized a fourth COVID vaccine for the most vulnerable populations.

This new dose is already available in some locations and will be available within the week at hundreds more health care provider locations in North Dakota.

“This additional research dose really will be potentially life-saving for older individuals who are at highest risk for severe COVID-19,” said Molly Howell, immunization director at the North Dakota Department of Health.

A fourth COVID-19 vaccine, which acts as a second booster shot, is now available to people meeting specific criteria within the state.

It’s for those 50 or older or 12 years and up with a weakened immune system. You also qualify if you received a Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

The new vaccine must be administered at least 4 months after the last dose.

The FDA is basing its decision to give the fourth dose a green light based on a large-scale study done in Israel involving hundreds of thousands of people.

“I will say that for people 60 and older, in Israel, the additional booster dose, reduced mortality so reduced deaths by 78% compared to having only three doses,” said Howell.

There were found to be no significant side effects beyond what some have experienced after the first booster shot.

If you want to receive a fourth dose of the vaccine, speak to your primary care physician.

There are 490 health care providers signed up with the state Health Department to administer the vaccine.

The Health Department says one of its top priorities is getting the fourth vaccine to seniors at long-term health facilities within North Dakota.

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