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COVID shots and Cancer
Kat62021
20 Posts
So, apparently cancer treatment makes COVID shots less effective. In the UK, a study found that cancer patients needed to get their second shots on time to have full immunity. I got my first shot on April 1st and was told I'd be contacted for the second one in 4 months (not at all on time). Here is a CBC article referencing the issue: https://www.rcinet.ca/en/2021/04/07/cancer-patients-need-second-vaccine-on-time-say-pharmacists/?fbclid=IwAR0pjeYvgRya_288KO7sdT74UhMsiq2AVsP_8WSCiW_xXWmG1xGzyXqQyt8 I'd love to hear your thoughts.
14 Replies
Kuching
273 Posts
Hi Kat62021‍ . Please look at the discussion about this in “Covid vaccinations for chemo patients”, further up in today’s posts. (It should really have a different name, but it just sort of took off sideways!).
Briefly, I am in Ontario. I contacted the local Health Unit, told them that the Ministry of Health was recommending that cancer patients should get their second shot sooner. They wrote back and said yes, just take this email with you when you get your first shot and they will change the second appointment. I’ll find out next Friday whether this actually works or not! The link and relevant quote from Min. Of Health is in my post from yesterday.
Rochelle
4 Posts
It is noted on the NYGH (Ontario) vaccine site that transplant recipients and those in chemotherapy should receive their second shot within 21 to 28 days of the first dose. My oncologist has advised I get my shot during my "off" week of taking Xeloda - 3 days after I finish and 2 days before I restart. That gives me a 2 day window. I'm watching the hospital website everyday for appointments to open on those days.
Rochelle‍, Kat62021‍, Kuching

Here is a link to the other conversation happening: Covid Vaccinations for Chemo Patients - CancerConnection.ca
Kuching
273 Posts

Here’s what North York Hosiptal says about it.

In Ontario, the following patients will now receive their second dose 21 to 28 days after the first dose:

  • Transplant recipients
  • Individuals receiving active cancer treatment (chemotherapy, targeted therapy, immunotherapy. Note - “Active cancer treatment” excludes those solely receiving hormonal therapy or radiation therapy)

To book your second dose, click on the registration link and identify yourself as having a Highest or High Risk Chronic Condition. When you come to the screening area, let the screener know that you have either received a transplant or your are receiving active treatment for cancer.

I looked at the email confirming my appointments (4 months apart) and it says to call 1-888-999-6488 to change the second appointment. I’m going to try that today, rather than waiting until I get there next week.

Sorry that this only seems to be happening in Ontario - you guys in other provinces might want to raise a little hell about it!

Kuching
273 Posts
Update!

i just spent half an hour on hold at the number I gave in the last post, only to be told that their system automatically books appointments 4 months apart, and they can’t override that to change it to an earlier date. I told her that various websites were telling us to call that number to change it. Sorry. I asked her what cancer patients were meant to do to get an earlier second booking? Sorry, don’t know, nobody told us anything about that.

So I’m back to trying to change it when I get my first shot. Let me know if anyone has better luck!
Crys
26 Posts
Kuching‍ same on my end. Super frustrating conversation with them as I called last week and they said that Ontario would be making changes today so I called back and they still have zero information. Would really appreciate an update on how to get this resolved as my dad is coming up to the 4 week mark.
Kuching
273 Posts
Krys‍ I am getting my first shot tomorrow afternoon. I hope to change my second appointment while I’m there. I’ll let you know if I have any luck!
Kuching
273 Posts
Crys‍ Sorry, I replied to Krys‍ Instead of Crys‍ ! Try again...

I'm getting my first shot tomorrow, and hope to be able to change the second appointment while I’m there. I’ll let you know how it goes.
Crys
26 Posts
Good luck!
Pjumper
17 Posts
I get mine on the 21st, hope it goes okay
Mee
25 Posts
So I was just diagnosed with IDC ER-, HER2+ and will have 5 more rounds of chemo 3 weeks apart (just finished the first on April 9). My oncologist insisted that I get the Covid vaccine in the week before my next chemo treatment, and the 2nd shot 21 days later. I live in Ontario (Halton region, but am having cancer treatment in Peel region which complicated things) so I contacted my family doctor who was able to set up appointments for me on April 23 and May 13 for the Covid vaccine in Halton. I had initially tried going onto the website to book the vaccine online, but the 2nd shot was scheduled for 4 months down the road, which was unacceptable to my oncologist. Might be another option.
Kuching
273 Posts
Had my first Pfizer shot today, in Brockville. Managed to rebook my second appointment for May 21st while I was there, which is a lot better than the original August 6th! I took all kinds of paperwork to prove I had cancer and was on targeted therapy, but they never asked to see any of it.
Kuching
273 Posts
Alberta just announced they are also shortening the interval for cancer patients. Here’s the link.

https://apple.news/AFPsbKPIeRcChYQs6fS_D1Q
Nix
85 Posts
To add to Mee‍’s comment about Halton, they have a form now that you can get your doctor to fill out confirming you are eligible for the shots 3 weeks apart (you must be in active cancer treatment that includes an immune supressing treatment such as chemo...my mom who has MBC and is only on an AI is not eligible). I had my first dose on April 21 and second booked for May 12.

https://www.halton.ca/getmedia/f64f4d86-af77-4a25-9f05-0d1749823143/HE-covid-19-vaccine-medical-exceptions-to-extended-dose-interval-form.aspx

For anyone in Ontario but not in Halton, the provincal government are the ones who created this exemption so all health units should be offering it but not all will have the same process. Keep digging until you find the procedure for your area!!!
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