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Health Minister Harsh Vardhan holds a dose of Bharat Biotech's COVID-19 vaccine called COVAXIN, during a vaccination campaign. (REUTERS)
Health Minister Harsh Vardhan holds a dose of Bharat Biotech's COVID-19 vaccine called COVAXIN, during a vaccination campaign. (REUTERS)

'Do not take Covaxin if...': Bharat Biotech issues fact sheet

  • Bharat Biotech has come out with a fact sheet about the process involved and who should avoid taking Covaxin
  • The company has urged the participants to disclose health-related issues to their vaccination officer

India launched the world's biggest vaccination drive with two 'Made in India vaccines- Covishield and Covaxin- against the coronavirus disease which has claimed more than 1 lakh 50 thousand people in the country. Covishield is made by Serum Institute of India (SII) and Covaxin is manufactured by Bharat Biotech.

Three days after India kick-started mass inoculation against Covid-19, Bharat Biotech has come out with a fact sheet about the process involved and who should avoid taking the vaccine.

According to the fact sheet posted on Bharat Biotech's website, it is advisable not to take the vaccine if a person has allergies, fever or bleeding disorder, weaker immunity or are on a medicine that affects their immune system.

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It also said that pregnant and breastfeeding women should also avoid taking Covaxin. Those who have received another Covid-19 vaccine should also not get the Bharat Biotech's medicine, the company said.

The factsheet lists side effects that include pain, swelling or itching, fever, malaise, weakness, rashes, nausea and vomiting. Recipients are also warned of severe allergic reaction that may include difficulty in breathing, swelling of the face and throat, fast heart-beat, rashes all over the body, dizziness and weakness.

Earlier, the govt had said that someone who had an adverse reaction to a previous Covid vaccine dose or allergic to any other vaccine, pregnant women and lactating mothers should not take Covid jabs.

So who all are eligible to get Covaxin shots?

According to the fact sheet released by Bharat Biotech, "Individuals who are prioritised under the public health program of the ministry of health and family welfare will be covered under this endeavour. Informing the individuals about the offer for a vaccination with Covaxin will rest with the respective government program officials. Those offered Covaxin at pre-specified booths will have the options to receive or reject administration of the vaccine," the fact sheet said.

Bharat Biotech issues Covaxin fact sheet.
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Bharat Biotech issues Covaxin fact sheet.

So far, a total of 3,81,305 beneficiaries have been vaccinated for covid-19 in cumulative 7,704 sessions. At least 580 persons so far have reported Adverse Event Following Immunization (AEFI) with majority complaining of fever, headache and nausea, according to the provisional data of ongoing vaccination drive. On Monday, the government had said that no case of serious or severe AEFI attributable to vaccination till date.

Two doses of Covaxin

Covaxin is an inactivated vaccine. This destroys the pathogen’s ability to replicate but keeps it intact so that the immune system can still recognise it and produce an immune response. The vaccine will be administered in two doses and stored at 2-8° degrees Celsius.

India has granted emergency use authorisation (EUA) to two covid-19 vaccines -- Pune-based Serum Institute of India’s Covishield and Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech International Ltd’s Covaxin which are being used in the government’s vaccination drive.

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