18 minutes | Jun 14, 2021

What the new CDC masking guidance means for kidney patients

The CDC's new masking guidance says fully vaccinated people do not have to wear masks, but does that include kidney patients? Are people who are immune comprised fully protected by the vaccine? We have collected some of our patients’ most pressing questions about the new masking guidance and have asked Dr. Joe Vassalotti, NKF Chief Medical Officer, to answer them. We answer the following questions: Is it safe to get the COVID-19 vaccine if you have kidney disease? Should I go to the doctor to determine if I have developed antibodies from the COVID-19 vaccine? If I don’t develop antibodies after getting the COVID-19 vaccine, should I get another one? I am a transplant recipient. Will the vaccine protect me if I get COVID-19, even if it’s only 50% effective? I am a dialysis recipient. Will the vaccine protect me if I get COVID-19, even if it’s only 50% effective? I’m a transplant patient. Does my family need to continue wearing a mask around me and others? Is it safe for a transplant or dialysis patient to work in an office without a mask with a coworker who is not vaccinated and won’t wear a mask? I am immunosuppressed and vaccinated, but my grandson is not. Should I continue wearing a mask around him? Is it safe for fully vaccinated family members to be around transplant and dialysis patients without a mask? If someone already had COVID-19 do they need two doses of the vaccine? If a transplant or dialysis patient did not get second shot in time, can they start the process over? Did the new masking guidelines from the CDC create a false sense of security? What should kidney patients do if they get COVID-19?   In this episode, you will hear from: Joseph A. Vassalotti, MD: Nephrologist Joseph A. Vassalotti, MD, is the Chief Medical Officer of the National Kidney Foundation and Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology, at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, NY. He received his medical degree with Distinction in Research from the SUNY Stony Brook School of Medicine and completed an Internal Medicine Residency and Nephrology Fellowship at the Johns Hopkins Hospital. At NKF, his major focus is implementation of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines in chronic kidney disease (CKD), including the NKF’s Kidney Disease Outcomes Quality Initiative (KDOQI), particularly through guidance of the NKF’s primary care initiative, called CKDintercept. He has served as co-principal investigator for the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), demonstration project “CKD Health Evaluation and Risk Information Sharing” (CHERISH), which aimed to identify individuals at high risk for kidney disease in the U.S. and as an investigator for the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) sponsored clustered practice randomized trial entitled, “Evidenced-Based Primary Care for Kidney Disease.”   For more resources on COVID-19 for kidney patients, visit www.kidney.org/coronavirus  
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