BNT162b2 vaccine effectiveness in chronic kidney disease patients—an observational study

Dana Bielopolski, Gilad Libresco, Noam Barda, Noa Dagan, Tali Steinmetz, Dafna Yahav, David M Charytan, Ran D Balicer, Benaya Rozen-Zvi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a risk factor for severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We aimed to evaluate the real-life effectiveness of the BNT162b2 messenger RNA vaccine for a range of outcomes in patients with CKD compared with matched controls.

METHODS: Data from Israel's largest healthcare organization were retrospectively used. Vaccinated CKD [estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) <60 ml/min/1.73 m 2] and maintenance dialysis patients were matched to vaccinated controls without CKD (eGFR ≥60 ml/min/1.73 m 2) according to demographic and clinical characteristics. Study outcomes included documented infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, symptomatic infection, COVID-19-related hospitalization, severe disease and death. Vaccine effectiveness was estimated as the risk ratio (RR) at days 7-28 following the second vaccine dose, using the Kaplan-Meier estimator. Effectiveness measures were also evaluated separately for various stages of CKD.

RESULTS: There were 67 861 CKD patients not treated with dialysis, 2606 hemodialysis (HD) patients and 70 467 matched controls. The risk of severe disease {RR 1.84 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.95-2.67]} and death [RR 2.00 (95% CI 0.99-5.20)] was increased in nondialysis CKD patients compared with controls without CKD following vaccination. For the subgroup of patients with eGFR <30 ml/min/1.73 m 2, the risk of severe disease and death was increased compared with controls [RR 6.42 (95% CI 1.85-17.51) and RR 8.81 (95% CI 1.63-13.81), respectively]. The risks for all study outcomes were increased in HD patients compared with controls.

CONCLUSION: Two doses of the BNT162b2 vaccine were found to be less efficient for patients with eGFR <30 ml/min/1.73 m 2. Risk in HD patients is increased for all outcomes. These results suggest prioritizing patients with eGFR <30 ml/min/1.73 m 2 for booster shots, pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis and early COVID-19 therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1838-1846
Number of pages9
JournalCKJ: Clinical Kidney Journal
Issue number10
StatePublished - 4 Jul 2022


  • BNT162b2 vaccine
  • chronic kidney disease
  • COVID-19


Dive into the research topics of 'BNT162b2 vaccine effectiveness in chronic kidney disease patients—an observational study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this