Warning after two NHS workers suffer allergic reaction to Covid-19 jab

Regulators have issued a warning that people who have a history of "significant" allergic reactions should not currently receive the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine after two people who had the jab on Tuesday had allergic reactions.

Two NHS staff members who received the vaccine on the first day of the mass vaccination programme suffered an allergic reaction, the NHS in England has confirmed.

It is understood both staff members have a significant history of allergic reactions – to the extent where they need to carry an adrenaline auto-injector with them.

They were among thousands who received the vaccine on Tuesday.

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COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Margaret Keenan, 90, is applauded by staff as she returns to her ward after becoming the first person in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Margaret Keenan, 90, is applauded by staff as she returns to her ward after becoming the first person in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
Margaret Keenan, 90, speaks to the media at University Hospital in Coventry, central England, on December 8, 2020 after becoming the first person to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine in the country's biggest ever immunisation programme. - Britain on December 8 hailed a turning point in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, as it begins the biggest vaccination programme in the country's history with a new Covid-19 jab. (Photo by Jacob King / POOL / AFP) / The erroneous mention[s] appearing in the metadata of this photo by Jacob King has been modified in AFP systems in the following manner: Pictures were taken on [December 8, 2020] instead of [December 9, 2020]. Please immediately remove the erroneous mention[s] from all your online services and delete it (them) from your servers. If you have been authorized by AFP to distribute it (them) to third parties, please ensure that the same actions are carried out by them. Failure to promptly comply with these instructions will entail liability on your part for any continued or post notification usage. Therefore we thank you very much for all your attention and prompt action. We are sorry for the inconvenience this notification may cause and remain at your disposal for any further information you may require. (Photo by JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Margaret Keenan, 90, speaks to the media at University Hospital in Coventry, central England, on December 8, 2020 after becoming the first person to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine in the country's biggest ever immunisation programme. - Britain on December 8 hailed a turning point in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, as it begins the biggest vaccination programme in the country's history with a new Covid-19 jab. (Photo by Jacob King / POOL / AFP) / The erroneous mention[s] appearing in the metadata of this photo by Jacob King has been modified in AFP systems in the following manner: Pictures were taken on [December 8, 2020] instead of [December 9, 2020]. Please immediately remove the erroneous mention[s] from all your online services and delete it (them) from your servers. If you have been authorized by AFP to distribute it (them) to third parties, please ensure that the same actions are carried out by them. Failure to promptly comply with these instructions will entail liability on your part for any continued or post notification usage. Therefore we thank you very much for all your attention and prompt action. We are sorry for the inconvenience this notification may cause and remain at your disposal for any further information you may require. (Photo by JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Nurse May Parsons (R) administers the Pfizer/BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine to Margaret Keenan (L), 90, at University Hospital in Coventry, central England, on December 8, 2020 making Keenan the first person to receive the vaccine in the country's biggest ever immunisation programme. - Britain on December 8 hailed a turning point in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, as it begins the biggest vaccination programme in the country's history with a new Covid-19 jab. (Photo by Jacob King / POOL / AFP) / The erroneous mention[s] appearing in the metadata of this photo by Jacob King has been modified in AFP systems in the following manner: Pictures were taken on [December 8, 2020] instead of [December 9, 2020]. Please immediately remove the erroneous mention[s] from all your online services and delete it (them) from your servers. If you have been authorized by AFP to distribute it (them) to third parties, please ensure that the same actions are carried out by them. Failure to promptly comply with these instructions will entail liability on your part for any continued or post notification usage. Therefore we thank you very much for all your attention and prompt action. We are sorry for the inconvenience this notification may cause and remain at your disposal for any further information you may require. (Photo by JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Nurse May Parsons (R) prepares Margaret Keenan (L), 90, to be the first person to recieve the Pfizer/BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital in Coventry, central England, on December 8, 2020 as Britain starts its biggest ever immunisation programme. - Britain on December 8 hailed a turning point in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, as it begins the biggest vaccination programme in the country's history with a new Covid-19 jab. (Photo by Jacob King / POOL / AFP) / The erroneous mention[s] appearing in the metadata of this photo by Jacob King has been modified in AFP systems in the following manner: Pictures were taken on [December 8, 2020] instead of [December 9, 2020]. Please immediately remove the erroneous mention[s] from all your online services and delete it (them) from your servers. If you have been authorized by AFP to distribute it (them) to third parties, please ensure that the same actions are carried out by them. Failure to promptly comply with these instructions will entail liability on your part for any continued or post notification usage. Therefore we thank you very much for all your attention and prompt action. We are sorry for the inconvenience this notification may cause and remain at your disposal for any further information you may require. (Photo by JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Nurse May Parsons (L) walks with Margaret Keenan (C), 90, at University Hospital in Coventry, central England, on December 8, 2020 as Keenan is prepared to revieve an injection and become the first person to get the Pfizer/BioNtech Covid-19 vaccine as Britain starts its biggest ever immunisation programme. - Britain on December 8 hailed a turning point in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, as it begins the biggest vaccination programme in the country's history with a new Covid-19 jab. (Photo by Jacob King / POOL / AFP) / The erroneous mention[s] appearing in the metadata of this photo by Jacob King has been modified in AFP systems in the following manner: Pictures were taken on [December 8, 2020] instead of [December 9, 2020]. Please immediately remove the erroneous mention[s] from all your online services and delete it (them) from your servers. If you have been authorized by AFP to distribute it (them) to third parties, please ensure that the same actions are carried out by them. Failure to promptly comply with these instructions will entail liability on your part for any continued or post notification usage. Therefore we thank you very much for all your attention and prompt action. We are sorry for the inconvenience this notification may cause and remain at your disposal for any further information you may require. (Photo by JACOB KING/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Margaret Keenan, 90, speaks to the media after becoming the first patient in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital, Coventry, administered by nurse May Parsons, at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Nurse May Parsons carries the first Pfizer/BioNTech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital Coventry, to be administered to Margaret Keenan, 90, at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Margaret Keenan, 90, speaks to the media after becoming the first patient in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital, Coventry, administered by nurse May Parsons, at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
Margaret Keenan, 90, is applauded back onto her ward by nurses, after receiving the first Pfizer covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital Coventry. (Photo by Jacob King/PA Images via Getty Images)
COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Margaret Keenan, 90, is applauded by staff as she returns to her ward after becoming the first person in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Margaret Keenan, 90, is applauded by staff as she returns to her ward after becoming the first person in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
Dr Doreen Brown, 85, receives the first of two Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine jabs, at Guy's Hospital in London, on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history. Care home workers, NHS staff and people aged 80 and over began receiving the jab this morning.
A nurse waits to administer the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre in Cardiff on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history. Care home workers, NHS staff and people aged 80 and over began receiving the jab this morning.
CAPTION CORRECTION AMENDING SPELLING OF NAME TO RANJAN SHUKLA Ranjan Shukla, accompanied by her husband Dr Hari Shukla, receives the first of two Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine jabs, administered by retired nurse Suzanne Medows, at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle, on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history. Care home workers, NHS staff and people aged 80 and over began receiving the jab this morning.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson looks on after nurse Rebecca Cathersides administered the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to Lyn Wheeler at Guy's Hospital in London, on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history. Care home workers, NHS staff and people aged 80 and over began receiving the jab this morning.
David Farrell, 51, from Llandow, receives the first of two Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine jabs at a vaccination centre in Cardiff, on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history. Care home workers, NHS staff and people aged 80 and over began receiving the jab this morning.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks and Lyn Wheeler (right) before she receives the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at Guy's Hospital in London, on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history. Care home workers, NHS staff and people aged 80 and over began receiving the jab this morning.
CARDIFF, WALES - DECEMBER 08: A woman receives the first of two Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine jabs at a vaccination centre on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Cardiff, United Kingdom. Wales joined the other UK nations in rolling out the covid-19 vaccine on Tuesday, a rare moment of coordination after months of disjointedness in the four nations' pandemic response. Wales introduced a 17-day "firebreak" lockdown in October and November to suppress the surge in covid-19 cases, but infections have continued to rise. (Photo by Ben Birchall - Pool / Getty Images)
CARDIFF, WALES - DECEMBER 08: A Covid-19 vaccination record card at a vaccination centre on the first day of the largest immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Cardiff, United Kingdom. Wales joined the other UK nations in rolling out the covid-19 vaccine on Tuesday, a rare moment of coordination after months of disjointedness in the four nations' pandemic response. Wales introduced a 17-day "firebreak" lockdown in October and November to suppress the surge in covid-19 cases, but infections have continued to rise. (Photo by Ben Birchall - Pool / Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson watches as nurse Rebecca Cathersides administers the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to Lyn Wheeler at Guy's Hospital at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in London, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Frank Augstein - Pool / Getty Images)
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson watches as nurse Rebecca Cathersides administers the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to Lyn Wheeler at Guy's Hospital in London, on December 8, 2020. - UK health authorities rolled out the first doses of a widely tested and independently reviewed COVID-19 vaccine, starting a global immunization program that is expected to gain momentum as more serums win approval. (Photo by Frank Augstein / POOL / AFP) (Photo by FRANK AUGSTEIN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
COVENTRY, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: "Bill" William Shakespeare, 81, receives the Pfizer/BioNTech covid-19 vaccine at University Hospital at the start of the largest ever immunisation programme in the UK's history on December 8, 2020 in Coventry, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Jacob King - Pool / Getty Images)
PORTSMOUTH, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Liz Rix, Chief Nurse rolls up Michael Tibbs, 99, sleeve in preparation of administering the Pfizer/BioNtech covid-19 vaccine at Queen Alexandra Hospital. Michael Tibbs is the first person in the South West to receive the Covid-19 vaccination on December 8, 2020 in Portsmouth, United Kingdom. More than 50 hospitals across England were designated as covid-19 vaccine hubs, the first stage of what will be a lengthy vaccination campaign. NHS staff, over-80s, and care home residents will be among the first to receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which recently received emergency approval from the country's health authorities. (Photo by Ewan Galvin - Pool / Getty Images)
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The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has given precautionary advice to NHS trusts that anyone who has a history of "significant" allergic reactions to medicines, food or vaccines should not receive the vaccine.

The NHS in England said all trusts involved with the vaccination programme have been informed.

This means that anyone scheduled to receive the vaccine on Wednesday will be asked about their history of allergic reactions.

Professor Stephen Powis, national medical director for the NHS in England, said: "As is common with new vaccines, the MHRA have advised on a precautionary basis that people with a significant history of allergic reactions do not receive this vaccination after two people with a history of significant allergic reactions responded adversely yesterday.

(PA Graphics)
(PA Graphics)

"Both are recovering well."

The MHRA advice states: "Any person with a history of a significant allergic reaction to a vaccine, medicine or food (such as previous history of anaphylactoid reaction or those who have been advised to carry an adrenaline auto-injector) should not receive the Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine.

"Resuscitation facilities should be available at all times for all vaccinations. Vaccination should only be carried out in facilities where resuscitation measures are available."

They developed symptoms of "anaphylactoid reaction" shortly after receiving the vaccine, but both recovered after the appropriate treatment.

Pfizer said the vaccine was "well tolerated" during the trials with "no serious safety concerns".

A spokeswoman said: "We have been advised by MHRA of two yellow card reports that may be associated with allergic reaction due to administration of the Covid-19 BNT162b2 vaccine.

(PA Graphics)
(PA Graphics)

"As a precautionary measure, the MHRA has issued temporary guidance to the NHS while it conducts an investigation in order to fully understand each case and its causes.

"Pfizer and BioNTech are supporting the MHRA in the investigation.

"In the pivotal phase 3 clinical trial, this vaccine was generally well tolerated with no serious safety concerns reported by the independent Data Monitoring Committee.

"The trial has enrolled over 44,000 participants to date, over 42,000 of whom have received a second vaccination."

The yellow card scheme is the UK system for collecting and monitoring information on suspected safety concerns or incidents involving medicines and medical devices.

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