Alaska health worker has serious allergic reaction to Pfizer’s COVID vaccine

Pharma firm says it is working with local authorities to assess matter and follows all reports of allergic reactions after vaccination, will 'update labeling language if needed'

Illustrative: A nurse prepares to give an injection of the COVID-19 vaccine to a healthcare worker at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Westwood, California on December 16, 2020. (Brian van der Brug/Pool/AFP)

WASHINGTON — A health worker in Alaska suffered a serious allergic reaction after getting Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine and is now hospitalized but stable, a report said Wednesday.

The New York Times reported that the person received their shot on Tuesday, and Pfizer confirmed that the company was working with local authorities to investigate the incident.

Two health workers in Britain had similar allergic reactions, causing the government there to tell people to avoid getting the shot if they had a history of severe allergies.

The US regulator issued an emergency approval with the warning that people who had known allergies to ingredients inside the vaccine should avoid it.

Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at Rady Children’s Hospital before it is placed back in the refrigerator in San Diego, California, on December 15, 2020. (Ariana Drehsler/AFP)

“We don’t yet have all the details of the report from Alaska about a potential serious allergic reactions, but are actively working with local health authorities to assess,” a Pfizer spokesperson said.

“We will closely monitor all reports suggestive of serious allergic reactions following vaccination and update labeling language if needed.”

Volunteers for Pfizer’s clinical trial of 44,000 people were excluded if they had a history of allergic reactions to vaccines or components of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Overall, the trial found no serious safety issues, but regulators and the company are continuing to monitor for adverse events after vaccination.

The US is vaccinating some three million people this week with the vaccine, and hopes to reach a total of 20 million people this month if another vaccine, developed by Moderna, is approved.

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