California health officials on Sunday told providers across the state to pause administering doses of a huge batch of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine after several people, who received the dose, reportedly developed severe allergic reactions. In total, the batch of 330,000 doses has been distributed to 287 providers across the state. The shipments with this batch of the Moderna vaccine had arrived between January 5 and January 12.
Though the said incidents appear to be localised at a single community clinic, the California Department of Public Health said that the doses from Moderna Lot 041L20A that are suspected of causing a “higher-than-usual number of adverse events” should be put away before a probe is concluded.
“This week, a higher-than-usual number of adverse events were reported with a specific lot of Moderna vaccine administered at one community vaccination clinic. Fewer than 10 individuals required medical attention over the span of 24 hours,” read the statement.
Meanwhile, providers were told to use doses from other available vaccine inventory until the investigation is complete. The pause applies only to one lot that came from Moderna, and not all the vaccine doses from the company.
The clinic that had the allergic reactions switched to another lot of Moderna vaccine after closing for a few hours, according to the state. Officials, however, didn’t disclose the clinic’s name or location.
The manufacturer, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are reviewing the lot and related medical information.
First reaction due to Moderna COVID-19 vaccine reported from Boston
It is pertinent to note here that prior to this, a doctor in Boston had developed a severe allergic reaction after receiving Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine. On December 26th it was reported that Dr Hossein Sadrzadeh, a geriatric oncology fellow at Boston Medical Center, said he had a severe reaction almost immediately after being vaccinated. He complained of feeling dizzy with a racing heart. This was reported to be the first severe reaction publicly linked to Moderna’s vaccine, which was then in its first week of a nationwide rollout.
Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine dose leads to deaths in Norway
Moreover, twenty-three people reportedly died in Norway within days of receiving their first dose of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine with 13 of those deaths apparently related to the side effects of the shots.
Common reactions to the vaccine, including fever and nausea, “may have contributed to a fatal outcome in some frail patients,” New York Post quoted Sigurd Hortemo, chief physician at the Norwegian Medicines Agency, as saying in a statement on January 15 (Friday).
Reacting to the death reports, a Pfizer rep had said that the company is “aware of reported deaths” following the administration of the vaccine in Norway and is working with the Norwegian Medicines Agency to gather all the relevant information.
India also begins its nationwide COVID-19 vaccine programme
Meanwhile, India also began its nationwide inoculation programme on Saturday (16 January). AIIMS Director Randeep Guleria, who was among others to get vaccinated at the Delhi hospital on the first day of Covid vaccination drive, said on Monday that he didn’t experience any side effects because of the vaccine.
After getting the vaccine jab, “I didn’t experience any side effect. I have been working since morning and attending meetings as well. I’m all right”, Randeep Guleria said while speaking to media on Monday.
Randeep Guleria also urged people to get vaccinated in a bid to lower Covid-19 mortality rate in the country.