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UIW COVID-19 Community Updates and Operations Information

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Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is caused by a coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2. This type of coronavirus has not been seen before. You can get COVID-19 through contact with another person who has the virus. It is predominantly a respiratory illness that can affect other organs. People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported, ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2 to 14 days after exposure to the virus. Symptoms may include: fever or chills; cough; shortness of breath; fatigue; muscle or body aches; headache; new loss of taste or smell; sore throat; congestion or runny nose; nausea or vomiting; diarrhea. Severe cases of COIVD-19 may result in hospitalization or even death.

Number of shots: 2 shots, 21 days apart

How is it given: Shot in the muscle of the upper arm

It does not contain:

  • Eggs
  • Preservatives
  • Latex

Who should get this vaccine

On December 11, 2020, the FDA issued and Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in persons aged 16 years and older and on December 13, 2020, ACIP issued recommendation for the use of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for the prevention of COVID-19

Who should not get this vaccine

  • If you have had a sever allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) or an immediate allergic reaction-even if it was not severe- to any ingredient in an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine, you should not get an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.
  • If you have had a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) or an immediate allergic reaction—even if it was not severe—after getting the first dose of the vaccine, you should not get another dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.
  • An immediate allergic reaction means a reaction within 4 hours of getting vaccinated, including symptoms such as hives, swelling, or wheezing (respiratory distress).

This includes allergic reactions to polyethylene glycol (PEG) and polysorbate. Polysorbate is not an ingredient in either mRNA COVID-19 vaccine but is closely related to PEG, which is in the vaccines. People who are allergic to PEG or polysorbate should not get an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine.

Most common side effects

In the arm where you got the shot:

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Redness

Throughout the rest of your body:

  • Chills
  • Tiredness
  • Headache

Safety Data

  • The above side effects are common but are mostly mild to moderate in clinical trials.
  • Side effects (such as fever, chills, tiredness, and headache) were more common after the second dose of the vaccine.

Most side effects were mild to moderate. However, a small number of people had severe side effects- defined as side effects affecting a person’s ability to do daily activities.

To learn more about COVID-19 vaccines and allergic reactions please review here

How well does the vaccine work

  • The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was 95% effective at preventing laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 illness in people without evidence of previous infection.
  • The COVID-19 vaccines have demonstrated efficacy at preventing severe and symptomatic COVID-19.
  • Vaccinated persons with an exposure to someone suspected or confirmed COIVD-19 will not be required to quarantine if they meet all of the following criteria:
    • Are fully vaccinated (i.e., > or equal 2 weeks following receipt of the second dose in a 2-dose series, or ≥2 weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine)
    • Are within 3 months following receipt of the last dose in the series
    • Have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure

University of the Incarnate Word COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

Visit the following link to read or download a copy of the university's COVID-19 vaccination policy.

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