January 25, 2021
Dear Resident and Resident Representative,
Walgreens Pharmacy will be returning on February 10th to administer the 2nd dose of the COVID-19 Vaccine to residents and staff. During this time, the Pharmacists will administer the 1st dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine to residents who were unable to receive it this month. In order to prepare, please sign the consent form under Section A-2 of the Vaccine Administration Record (VAR) only, as the rest will be completed by a healthcare personnel. A Fact Sheet on the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine was provided to you in a previous correspondence. The fact sheet for the vaccine may be reviewed at www.cvdvaccine.com. Please return the VAR form in the self-addressed stamped envelope within three days of receipt.
It is important to know that these vaccines are being held to the same safety standards as all vaccines. Several expert and independent groups evaluate the safety of vaccines being given to people in the United States. We do we know the following about these mRNA COVID-19 vaccines: The Pfizer vaccine is well-tolerated and the clinical trials did not reveal any significant safety concerns.
However, mRNA vaccines are expected to produce side effects after vaccination, especially after the 2nd dose. These may include fever, headache, and muscle aches. These are similar to side-effects you may experience after other adult vaccines like the flu vaccine and the shingles vaccine
Please note the Center for Disease Control and the Secretary of Health, Dr. Levine has reported the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. The FDA carefully reviews all safety data from clinical trials. Additionally, the FDA authorizes emergency vaccine use only when the expected benefits outweigh potential risks. Furthermore, the ACIP (Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices) reviews safety data before recommending any COVID-19 vaccine for use. Lastly, FDA and CDC will continue to monitor the safety of COVID-19 vaccines to make sure even very rare side effects are identified.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF THE PFIZER-BIONTECHCOVID-19 VACCINE?
In an ongoing clinical trial, the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine has been shown to prevent COVID-19following 2 doses given 3 weeks apart. The duration of protection against COVID-19 is currently unknown.
WHAT ARE THERISKS OF THE PFIZER-BIONTECH COVID-19 VACCINE? Side effects thathave been reported with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine include: • injection site pain • tiredness • headache muscle pain • chills • joint pain • fever • injection site swelling • injection siteredness • nausea • feeling unwell • swollen lymph nodes (lymphadenopathy)
There is a remote chance that the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine could cause a severe allergic reaction.A severe allergic reaction would usually occur within a few minutes to one hour after getting a dose of thePfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine. Signs of a severe allergic reaction can include: • Difficulty breathing •Swelling of your face and throat • A fast heartbeat • A bad rash all over your body • Dizziness and weakness
Covid-19 vaccines were tested in large clinical trials to make sure they meet safety standards. Many people were recruited to participate in these trials to see how the vaccines offer protection to people of different ages, races, and ethnicities, as well as those with different medical conditions.”
There are two shots needed to provide the best protection against COVID-19 for both mRNA vaccines. The first shot primes the immune system, helping it recognize the virus, and the second shot strengthens the immune response. Getting vaccinated is one of many steps you can take to protect yourself and others from COVID-19. Protection from COVID-19 is critically important because for some people, it can cause severe illness or death.
Vaccines work with your immune system so your body will be ready to fight the virus if you are exposed. Other steps, like masks and social distancing, help reduce your chance of being exposed to the virus or spreading it to others. Together, COVID-19 vaccination and following CDC’s recommendations to protect yourself and others will offer the best protection from COVID-19. (Source: https://www.fda.gov/emergency-preparedness-and-response/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/covid-19-vaccines and https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/vaccine-benefits.html ).
Thank you for your continued support and understanding as we work through this difficult time together.
Cristina Tarbox, LNHA, MHA, MPS
Licensed Nursing Home Administrator