- No major side effects after 500,000 jabs
- New research finds vaccine reduces transmission
- Taking paracetamol will not reduce impact
- No move to mix first and second dose
By Easwaran Rutnam
No major side effects have been reported after 500,000 people were given the Covishield AstraZeneca vaccine, health authorities said yesterday.
Health authorities also said that based on data, it has been noted that after the first jab of the AstraZeneca vaccine an individual can be protected from the virus.
Speaking at a briefing organised by the Sri Lanka Medical Association, Dr. Deepa Gamage, Consultant Epidemiologist at the Ministry of Health said that the AstraZeneca vaccine has been found to be safe.
She said that scientific research has found that the vaccine will drastically reduce the transmission of the virus.
“Initially the main intention of the vaccine was to prevent deaths and infections. However, latest research found that the vaccine can also prevent transmissions,” she said.
Meanwhile, Dr. Dhanusha Dassanayake, Consultant Immunologist at the Medical Research Institute said that, at the moment, there is no move to mix the two doses of the jab using different brands.
She also said that based on data, it has been noted that after the first jab of the AstraZeneca vaccine an individual can be protected from the virus between the 21st and 90th day.
“While the second dose is needed to be completely protected we have found that from the first dose an individual has some sort of protection,” she said.
The second dose of the vaccine is to be given in 10-12 weeks.
Dr. Dhanusha Dassanayake said that the guideline issued is to ensure a person gets the same brand of vaccine for both doses.
She also said that the immediate reaction to the vaccine normally lasts for 48-72 hours, adding that it is mostly the younger generation who have experienced mild side effects.
Dr. Dhanusha Dassanayake said that there is also no evidence to prove that taking paracetamol to bring down the fever after the jab will reduce the impact of the vaccine.