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COVID-19 Vaccine Checklist: Everything You Need To Know

Reports state that India administered 1,87,55,540 first doses of the vaccine in the first 17 days of March, adding that, at this rate, it will take 2.36 years for India to vaccinate 70 per cent of its population and 3.4 years to vaccinate the entire population with the initial dose of the two-dose regime vaccination programme.

India began its COVID-19 vaccination programme on 16 January, starting with healthcare workers in the first phase. In early February, the vaccination programme was expanded to include frontline workers, and in the ongoing second phase, which began on 1 March, people aged above 60 years and those above 45 years with co-morbidities are being vaccinated [1].

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Oxford University-AstraZeneca's Covishield vaccine, manufactured by Serum Institute of India, and Bharat Biotech's Covaxin are being used for the vaccination programme in the country.

In the coming months, as the rest of the country too will be provided by the vaccinations, here are some important measures that should be considered before and after the vaccine administration.

Covid-19 Vaccine Checklist

Before Taking The Covid-19 Vaccine

Keep in mind the following pointers before getting vaccinated:

  • Individuals with allergies to medication or drugs will have to get clearance from a medical practitioner. Polyethene glycol (PEG) is an ingredient in both mRNA COVID-19 vaccines and is a cause for severe allergies in some individuals [2]. You may be recommended to get checks on C-reactive protein (CRP), complete blood count (CBC), or Immunoglobulin-E (IgE) levels.
  • Diabetic individuals and cancer patients (especially ones undergoing chemotherapy) should only take the vaccine after approval from their doctor.
  • People who are receiving COVID-19 treatment, such as blood plasma or monoclonal antibodies, along with those who had been recently infected, should refrain from getting the vaccine right away.
  • After vaccination, you will be monitored at the vaccine centre in order to look for any immediate severe allergic reaction.
  • Only if the individual does not show any immediate severe reaction to the vaccine, then only they will be able to leave the vaccine centre.
  • People may witness some side effects, including pain at the injection site or fever, as these are some common symptoms for vaccination and nothing to be panicked about.
  • In some cases, severe side effects such as fatigue and chills may arise, but they are likely to go away in a few days [3].

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After Taking The Covid-19 Vaccine

Keep in mind the following pointers after getting vaccinated:

  • The vaccination will take a few weeks to prepare the body to build immunity.
  • Even after getting vaccinated, it is important to take precautions as you could still get the infection.
  • Even after vaccination, masks and other COVID-19 should be followed by every individual.
  • Individuals who have received dermal fillers may develop temporary swelling at or near the filler injection site, usually face or lips, after vaccination if swelling develops at or near the site of dermal filler following vaccination [4].

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Prevaccination Checklist for COVID-19 Vaccines

Below is a list of questions that will be used by the vaccination centres to understand your health and if there is any reason why you should not be vaccinated. We aim to help give you an idea of the questions.

  • Are you feeling sick today?
  • Have you ever received a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine?
  • Have you ever had an allergic reaction to any component of a COVID-19 vaccine, including Polyolyethylene (PEG) and Polysorbate?
  • Have you ever had an allergic reaction to another vaccine (other than the COVID-19 vaccine) or another injectable medication?
  • Have you ever had a severe allergic reaction (e.g., anaphylaxis) to something other than a component of the COVID-19 vaccine or any vaccine or injectable medication? This would include food, pet, venom, environmental, or oral medication allergies.
  • Have you received another vaccine in the last 14 days?
  • Have you received passive antibody therapy as a treatment for COVID-19?
  • Do you have a weakened immune system caused by HIV infection or cancer, or do you take immunosuppressive drugs or therapies?
  • Have you had a positive test for COVID-19, or has a doctor ever told you that you had COVID-19?
  • Do you have a bleeding disorder, or are you taking a blood thinner?
  • Are you pregnant or breastfeeding?
  • Do you have dermal fillers?

On A Final Note...

A total of 40,86,218 second doses were administered in the first 17 days of the month, an average of 2,40,365.8 doses per day. At this rate, it will take 10.8 years to vaccinate 70 per cent of India's population and 15.4 years to cover the entire population [5].