Advice from the CDC about anaphylaxis and mRNA COVID-19 vaccines
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has extensive guidance about the rollout of the COVID vaccine program. A summary of the CDC’s advice to vaccination sites is as follows:
- “Ensure that necessary supplies are available to manage anaphylaxis, especially sufficient quantities of epinephrine in pre-filled syringes or auto injectors.”
- “Screen potential vaccine recipients to identify persons with contraindications and precautions.”
- “Implement post-vaccination observation periods, either 15 or 30 minutes, depending on each patient’s previous history of allergic reactions.”
- “Ensure that healthcare providers can recognize signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis early.”
- “Immediately treat suspected anaphylaxis with intramuscular epinephrine; because of the acute, life-threatening nature of anaphylaxis, there are no contraindications to epinephrine administration. Patients experiencing anaphylaxis should be transported to facilities where they can receive appropriate medical care.”
- “All patients should be instructed to seek immediate medical care if they develop signs or symptoms of an allergic reaction after their observation period ends and they have left the vaccination location.”
- “Healthcare providers can play an important role in vaccine safety by being vigilant in recognizing and reporting adverse events after immunization.”
Interim Considerations: Preparing for the Potential Management of Anaphylaxis After COVID-19 Vaccination – CDC
Vaccines for COVID-19: Authorized vaccines – Health Canada
—Sean R. Hosein
- CDC COVID-19 Response Team and the Food and Drug Administration. Allergic reactions including anaphylaxis after receipt of the first dose of Pifzer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine – United States, 14-23 December 2020. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 6 January 2021.
- CDC COVID-19 Response Team and the Food and Drug Administration. Allergic reactions including anaphylaxis after receipt of the first dose of Moderna COVID-19 vaccine – United States, 21 December 2020 to 10 January 2021. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 22 January 2021.