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Allergy warning for Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine

ALLERGY WARNING FOR PFIZER/BIONTECH VACCINEJust 24 hours after the first vaccine was administered, people with severe allergies are already being advised not to receive the Pfizer / BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine after two health professionals experienced a reaction after receiving the first dose of the vaccine.

The Department of Public Health (NHS) in UK confirmed today that two health professionals suffered a reaction after receiving the first of two doses of the vaccine on Tuesday, on the first day of the British covid-19 vaccination program.

The Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issued the warning to all those who have had severe allergic reactions to medicines, some foods or another vaccine in the past.

The NHS has declared that all English hospitals participating in this program have been informed.

British health and medicine regulators also ask that centers where vaccines are being administered have adequate facilities to assist those affected in the event of any type of reaction.

Apparently, these two health professionals have a medical history of severe allergies when transporting adrenaline auto-injectors, according to the British press. Shortly after being vaccinated, the two health professionals suffered an “anaphylactic shock”, but recovered after receiving adequate treatment, according to health authorities.

These types of allergy reactions are sudden and widespread, usually starting with a tingling and dizzy feeling.

Vaccination in the UK started on Tuesday at fifty major hospitals, in what the Government called “V Day” (V day or vaccination). The first doses are for people over 80 and health workers and nursing homes.

The first person in the UK to receive the covid-19 vaccine, developed by the American pharmaceutical company Pfizer and its German associate BioNTech, was a 90-year-old woman. Margaret Keenan was filmed while being vaccinated at Coventry University Hospital in central England.

The United Kingdom has bought millions of doses from seven different producers.

Last week the Portuguese government announced that Portugal is aiming to vaccinate almost 1 million people against the coronavirus between January and April at the latest, dependant on the pace of vaccine deliveries. The government has signed contracts with six drugmakers for around 22 million doses. The vaccines still require approval by the European Medicines Agency.

Prime Minister Antonio Costa recently announced that COVID-19 vaccines will be optional, free of charge and mostly administered by the national health service.  He warned that the national vaccination plan is subject to “myriad uncertainties,” such as delivery times by foreign drugmakers and vaccine licenses, still to be issued by European Union authorities.

The priority groups to receive vaccinations first will include over 400,000 people aged 50+ who have illnesses that make them vulnerable to severe COVID-19, plus more than 300,000 frontline health care workers and emergency responders, including police officers, and 250,000 people living in care homes and care home employees.

The second phase of vaccinations, covering 1.8 million people, will be for everybody over 65-years-old as well as people between 50 and 65 who have health problems such as diabetes and obesity, officials said.

The third phase will cover the rest of Portugal’s population of 10.5 million, though more priority groups may be established if pandemic trends change.

Portugal has officially recorded more than 307,000 cases of COVID-19 and has suffered more than 4,700 deaths due to the virus.



Original article available in Portuguese at http://postal.pt/