Millions of people in the U.S. are being vaccinated for COVID-19. However, discussion is ongoing as to whether people who are immunocompromised, such as patients undergoing cancer treatment, or people who have autoimmune diseases, should be vaccinated for COVID-19.
“Both of those categories (of people) should be vaccinated,” says Dr. Gregory Poland, an infectious diseases expert and head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group. “Those are not contraindications. Those are indications to get the vaccine.” He adds that research is ongoing, but current information demonstrates the benefits far outweigh the theoretical risks.
In this Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Poland talks about vaccine hesitancy, and patients who are immunocompromised or have autoimmune conditions. Also, he discusses next steps in the journey to vaccinate children for COVID-19. And he reviews recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Control about in-person gatherings.
Read the full transcript.
For the safety of its patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was either recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in a nonpatient-care area where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.
Information in this post was accurate at the time of its posting. Due to the fluid nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, scientific understanding, along with guidelines and recommendations, may have changed since the original publication date.
Dr. Poland has served as a consultant for Merck & Co. Inc., Medicago Inc., GlaxoSmithKline plc, Sanofi Pasteur, Emergent BioSolutions Inc., Dynavax Technologies Corp., Genentech Inc., Eli Lilly and Co., Kentucky BioProcessing Inc. and Genevant Sciences Corp., and Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc. He is a paid scientific adviser for Johnson & Johnson. Honoraria: Elsevier.
Learn more about tracking COVID-19 and COVID-19 trends.