Ask anyone around and you will find out that one of the most lingering questions regarding the COVID-19 vaccine is, “Should I get one?”
In a webinar entitled, “Who should not be vaccinated for COVID-19?” streamed live on Friday, Feb. 5, Dr. Regina Berba, an associate professor at the University of the Philippines (UP) College of Medicine, identified who should not get vaccinated for COVID-19 based on their age, current health condition and other considerations.
Berba, who is also the Head of Hospital Infection Control Unit at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH), also explained why vaccines are very crucial in stopping the deadly virus.
“It should be clear to all of us that we continue to be in the midst of a pandemic,” Berba said, underscoring why COVID-19 vaccines are necessary.
Even if health protocols such as social distancing, hand-washing, and wearing masks have allowed most people to cope with the pandemic, she noted that the “the best way to stop this COVID-19 virus is to build up enough SARS-CoV-2-specific immunity and that’s through vaccination.”
Who should not get vaccinated?
While people in the medical community are strongly encouraging the public to get vaccinated, Berba noted that there are certain groups of individuals who cannot avail of the COVID-19 vaccine yet.
In particular, Berba said that people who should not get the COVID-19 vaccine include:
– anyone with a previous severe or immediate allergic reaction – such as those that cause anaphylaxis or requires medical intervention – to a COVID-19 vaccine dose, a vaccine component, or polysorbate
– those younger than 16 years of age
– people who are currently isolating or experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. These people, she explained, can “get vaccinated once they finish their isolation and their primary symptoms have resolved.”
Meanwhile, Berba noted that there are also those people who may get the vaccine only after considering risks and benefits and or consulting with their health care provider such as those:
– with a history of severe or immediate allergic reaction to any vaccine or injectable medication
– pregnant women
– people with certain immune compromising conditions
– breastfeeding women; and
– people on anticoagulants
Berba explained that people who should follow special procedures should also reconsider getting a COVID-19 vaccine, especially those:
– with history of severe or immediate allergic reaction (requiring medical intervention) to anything other than a vaccine or injectable medication can get the vaccine, but it should not but they should remain at the vaccination location for medical observation for 30 to 60 minutes after receipt of the vaccine
– people who have recently had COVID-19 and were treated with antibody-based therapies (monoclonal antibodies or covalescent and plasma) should wait until 90 days after treatment to be vaccinated
– people with a known COVID-19 “should wait until their quarantine is over” being vaccinated; and
– people who got another vaccine (non-COVID vaccines) should wait at least 14 days before getting COVID vaccines. “Likewise, if a person got COVID-19 vaccine, they should wait at least 14 days before getting any vaccines,” she added.