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American Cancer Society Statement on 2nd COVID-19 Booster Shot
May 4, 2022

Due to COVID-19’s disparate and excessive impact on patients with cancer and continuing waves of subvariants, the American Cancer Society (ACS) supports the National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s recommendation that all specified immunocompromised patients receive three mRNA doses of the COVID-19 primary vaccination series, plus an additional two booster doses. 

“Because vaccines have been shown to be a safe, effective way to protect against COVID-19, we strongly recommend patients with cancer be fully immunized with the recommended booster doses.  This particularly includes those patients who have received cancer treatment in the last year, have a blood cancer, or have undergone stem cell transplant.  With that said, the most effective protection for vaccinated immunocompromised patients is a reduction in community spread through widespread vaccination and the wearing of masks.  It is specifically important that those living or interacting with these patients also practice these recommendations,” said Dr. Arif Kamal, chief patient officer at the American Cancer Society. 

Patients with cancer often have weakened immune systems from cancer itself or cancer treatment. This creates an increased risk for COVID-19 complications and less protection from vaccines.  ACS recommends that fully vaccinated patients with cancer continue to wear masks, maintain social distancing, avoid crowds, and follow additional pre-vaccine recommendations for COVID-19 prevention.   

Read updated National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Covid-19 vaccination guidelines here.