It is also indicated on the official website that
The second dose does not provide any additional protection for these people., adding that there is
There is no danger in giving two doses to someone who has had COVID-19 [bien que] greater risk of side effects.
As a result, a large proportion of infected Quebecers did not make an appointment for a second dose, believing they were not eligible.
But in fact, and even if it is not explicitly indicated on the government site, it is already possible for an already infected Quebec to receive two doses.
With informed consent, it is possible to receive two doses if desired, specifying by email to the Ministry of Health of Quebec, stating that
For immunosuppressed people who have had COVID-19, two doses are recommended.
Thus, a person who has contracted COVID-19 will not be denied a second dose of the vaccine; She can come to the walk-in clinic or make an appointment.
Benoit Barbeau, professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at UQAM and an expert in virology, believes the lack of clarity on the part of the government sends the wrong message to the public.
Quebec is pushing people to get the vaccine, but anyone who has been infected is told they do not need a second dose. This message is not easy to understand…, he laments.
Especially since this Quebec approach is starting to become problematic, as several countries, including Canada, have indicated that it will be necessary to have proof that one has two vaccines in order to travel and avoid quarantine.
So a dose or two?
There is no doubt that a person infected with COVID-19 develops a certain natural immune response against the disease, but there is still some question as to how long this persists.
There are several factors that can reduce the level of protection if two doses are not given to an infected person., said Mr. Barbeau.
But it is still difficult to say with certainty whether these two doses are really necessary for an infected person, he says.
Pediatrician and microbiologist-infectious disease specialist at CHU Saint-Justine, Dr. Carolyn Kwach, the natural immune response lasts for at least six months after infection. And a single dose of the vaccine appears to enhance the immune response enough to provide adequate protection against the disease.
People who have had COVID-19 and received the first dose are known to have an excellent immune response, as achieved after two dosessays Dr. Kwach, who most recently chaired the National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI).
While, in theory, one infection should protect against another, there are some factors that need attention, Barbeau says.
For example, if the immune response lasts several months after infection, there is no guarantee that this natural immunity will protect forever, especially against some forms.
What about those who were infected more than a year ago at the start of the pandemic? Do they have enough antibodies left? Hard to say, say Dr. Quach and Mr. Barbeau.
Furthermore, the natural immunity acquired after infection is not necessarily the same from person to person, the latter specifies.
When sick people are infected, the stronger the immune response, he explains. So a person who tested positive but was asymptomatic may not have developed enough antibodies and may need a second dose, Barbeau says.
If you think you’ve been infected but aren’t sure, I wouldn’t count on it much. [l’immunité naturelle acquise par l’infection] so as not to take another dose, he warns.
Given all these uncertainties, Benoit Barbeau believes it would be prudent to give both doses to those infected.
I think it would be better to go with two doses; Security will be assured.
Dr. Kwach also believes that infected people need not worry about a second dose and may need it, especially if they are planning to travel.
Second dose may be useless for some people [qui ont été infectées], but it’s not dangerous. We know that people who have been infected and have been given two doses do not have as many side effects., she argues.
Quebec stands apart
Elsewhere in the country, Canadians who become infected receive two doses. In fact, the NACI even recommends two doses for the more than 1.4 million Canadians already infected.
In the United States, the CDC also recommends two doses. And only France and Israel in the world do not give second dose of vaccine to already infected people.
Quebec’s decision to take the same route as France was made in the wake of a spring vaccine shortage and has since subsided.
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