In an alarming development, at least 447 people have reported adverse effects after their first Covid-19 jab, According to the data compiled so far, the majority of these people have complained about fever, headache and nausea after being vaccinated. 

On Sunday, the centre in a press briefing reported that more than 2,24,300 people have been vaccinated against the Covid-19 virus. Out of the total people who were vaccinated, 447 recipients across the country have suffered from adverse effects after vaccination, also known as Adverse Event(s) Following Immunisation (AEFI). 

Adverse Event Following Immunization (AEFI) Report

In Delhi, after the vaccination drive’s first day came to an end, one “severe” and 51 “minor” cases were reported.  

According to the officials, the people who developed the “minor” AEFI reported dizziness and headaches after receiving their first jab. PTI reported that these individuals will be monitored for the next few days.  

AIIMS director Randeep Guleria reported that the security guard who received the vaccination’s first jab complained of palpitations as AEFI. According to Guleria the guard also developed a skin rash after being inoculated.  

According to news agency Indian Express, Maharashtra recorded 14 cases of AEFI on Saturday. It should be noted that not a single among the 14 cases is terminal. In Telangana, the public health director Srinivasa Rao reported 11 mild cases of AEFI. According to Rao, the 11 people complained of “pain, giddiness, and sweating, which are the most common in any vaccination program.”  

So far a total of 447 people have reported adverse effects after being administered the Covid-19 vaccine.

India isn’t the only country with alarming post inoculation effects. Norway, on Saturday, cautioned authorities against the evident side-effects of the Pfizer vaccines. So far, 23 elderly people and terminally ill patients have died after receiving their first shot of vaccine. However, Pfizer gave a statement saying, “The number of incidents so far is not alarming, and in line with expectations.” 

What is AEFI?

According to the Union Health Ministry’s revised guidelines on AEFI, an AEFI is “any untoward medical occurrence which follows immunisation and which doesn’t necessarily have a causal relationship with the usage of the vaccine. The adverse event may be any unfavourable or unintended sign, abnormal laboratory finding, symptom or disease” 

The adverse reactions are categorized based on the cause, severity of the reaction, and frequency.  

In the cause-specific reactions, there are two categories included which are: (1) Vaccine product-related reaction (2) Vaccine quality defect-related reaction.  

According to NK Arora, head of operations research unit of ICMR’s National Task Force for Covid-19, monitoring has been carried out based on India’s current safety surveillance mechanism. The mechanism includes doctors, health specialists and data provided.  

Speaking to a news agency, Arora said, “The vaccine safety surveillance network extends up to every district, where a panel of doctors and health workers monitor events of concern after getting any vaccine, investigate and report to state and national level.” 

However, since Covid-19 has made it necessary for immunization of adults as well, the Centre has also included cardiologists, neurologists, pulmonologists and general physicians in the AEFI committees, said Arora.  

In closing, 

The center claims that the adverse reactions to vaccines are monitored closely through the surveillance mechanism. 

However, as the Covid-19 vaccination drive continues, the extent and severity of these adverse events can have a big impact on the confidence of Indian masses towards the vaccination drive and the safety of vaccines.  

Currently, the vaccines that are administered are ‘Covaxin’ developed by Bharat biotech with ICMR’s collaboration, and ‘Covishield’ manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII).