Five groups of patients with specific medical risks will receive an invitation for COVID-19 vaccination this week or next week. It involves four groups of patients with impaired immune systems. People with neurological disorders accompanied by respiratory compromise will also be invited to get vaccinated. They have a higher risk of severe illness or death due to COVID-19. The patients will receive the invitation through the hospital where they are being treated. This involves about 100,000 people. They will be vaccinated with the Moderna vaccine.
The Health Council has recommended prioritising vaccination for people with an impaired immune system. This involves:
- Patients with a haematological malignancy (certain types of blood cancer);
- Patients with severe renal failure;
- Patients who have received a transplant (organ, stem cell or bone marrow);
- Patients with a severe congenital immune disorder.
All patients who fall into these categories and have had an outpatient consultation with their medical specialist in the past 18 months will be invited to get vaccinated. The patients will receive the invitation through the hospital. The medical specialist will select who will be invited based on predefined criteria. People undergoing treatment at several hospitals may receive more than one invitation. In that case, they can accept one of the invitations and notify the other hospital that they will not be using that invitation.
The Health Council has recommended that all patients in this group should be vaccinated with an mRNA vaccine, regardless of their age. For that reason, they will receive the Moderna vaccine. The vaccines will be repackaged by ten hospital pharmacies and distributed to the hospitals. This will take place in two phases, since there are not enough vaccine doses available to supply the full amount in a single delivery. The hospitals will receive over half of the vaccines on 23 March. The remaining doses will follow two weeks later, when the next delivery of Moderna vaccines has arrived in the Netherlands and been processed.
People with neurological disorders
People with neurological disorders accompanied by respiratory compromise will also be invited via hospitals. They can schedule an appointment with the hospital. Some of these people are not mobile enough to come to the hospital for vaccination. Their invitation letters will ask them to contact a specific call centre to make arrangements. After that, they will be included in the group of non-mobile elderly people living at home, who will be vaccinated at home starting from the end of March.