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Everyone living in Canada will have access to free, safe & effective COVID-19 vaccines, as health authorities have recently announced. Before getting vaccinated, it is important to be aware the safety & side effects of COVID-19vaccines you receive. Vaccines go through extensive trials before they can be introduced in a country. Vaccines are thoroughly tested for safety before they are approved. Same goes true for Covid-19 vaccine too. Vaccines on the market in Canada and other nations are monitored continuously. Commonly reported side effects of vaccination, such as pain at the site of injection, body chills or feeling tired or feverish, are not considered safety concerns to the health of people. Expert doctors and scientists follow strict international standards while deciding whether to approve a vaccine. Like all medicines, vaccines may cause side effects that are usually minor and temporary. More serious side effects are very rare. As experts opine a person is far more likely to be seriously harmed by a disease than by its vaccine.

Vaccine safety

Safe and reliable vaccines can help protect the people from COVID-19. Vaccination is expected to be an effective way to prevent the spread and reduce the impact of COVID-19. The effectiveness and immune response of the vaccine is being monitored as the vaccine is rolled out. COVID 19 vaccine will be an important tool to help stop the spread of the virus and allow individuals, families and workers to safely resume normal life, as the health authorities pronounce. The coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine does not cause a coronavirus infection. It helps to build up body immunity to the virus, so that the body will fight it off more easily if infection occurs.

After independent and thorough scientific reviews for safety, efficacy and quality, Health Canada has approved four vaccines for use in Canada:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech – approved on December 9, 2020

  • Moderna – approved on December 23, 2020

  • AstraZeneca – approved on February 26, 2021

  • Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) – approved on March 5, 2021

Understanding how COVID-19covid 19 vaccines are approved, how they work and possible side effects is important.

Only vaccines that Health Canada determines to be safe and effective will be approved for use in Canada and available in Ontario. After independent and thorough scientific reviews for safety, efficacy and quality, Health Canada has approved four vaccines for use in Canada that have expected efficacy as follows:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech – expected to be 95% effective after two doses

  • Moderna – expected to be 94% effective after two doses

  • AstraZeneca (AstraZeneca and COVISHIELD) – expected to be 64% effective after two doses

  • Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) – expected to be 66% effective after one dose

The vaccines:

  • were tested on a large number of people through extensive clinical trials

  • have met all the requirements for approval, including safety

  • are monitored for any adverse reactions that may occur after vaccination and appropriate measures will be taken

The vaccines cannot cause COVID-19

This is because they do not contain the SARS-CoV-2 virus responsible for the disease. However, if a person come in contact with the virus just before or after they complete the vaccine series of two doses, they could still develop COVID-19.

Commonly observed side effects with different vaccinations

A mild local reaction resolving by itself within a few minutes is not indicative of an allergic reaction and does not require special observation or specialized assessment prior to subsequent vaccination.

COVID-19vaccines and side effects

As per Health authorities, vaccines are safe, effective and the best way to everyone from serious illnesses like COVID-19. Vaccines work with our immune system so that the body will be ready to fight the virus if we are exposed. This can reduce the risk of developing COVID-19and make symptoms milder if you do get it. Like any vaccine, COVID-19vaccines can cause mild side effects, such as a low-grade fever or pain or redness at the injection site. Most reactions to vaccines are mild and go away within a few days on their own. As per medical researchers and scientific experts, more serious or long-lasting side effects to vaccines are possible but very rare. Vaccines are continually monitored to detect rare adverse events, however. Reported side effects to COVID-19vaccines so far have mostly been mild to moderate and short-lasting. They include fever, fatigue, headache, muscle pain, chills, diarrhoea, and pain at the injection site. The chances of any of these side effects following vaccination differ according to the specific COVID-19vaccine, though.

Swelling and urticarial rash at the injection site

Swelling and urticarial rash (i.e., hives) at the injection site can occur and may be the first indication of an evolving anaphylaxis. For this reason, while such reactions are not always caused by an allergic reaction, the individual should be kept under observation for considerable time period post vaccination depending upon the vaccines and types in order to ensure that the swelling or hives remain localized. Ice can be applied to the injection site for comfort. If hives or swelling disappears and there is no evidence of any progression to other parts of the body and there are no other symptoms within the specified observation period, no further observation may be necessary, depending upon the case and condition.

Anaphylaxis Reaction

As anaphylaxis is a serious, potentially life-threatening allergic reaction to foreign antigens. It has been proven to be causally associated with vaccines with an estimated frequency of 1.3 episodes per million doses of vaccine administered. Anaphylaxis is preventable in many cases and treatable in all. It should be anticipated in every vaccine, per se. Symptoms of anaphylaxis often occur within 15-30 minutes of vaccination, though it can sometimes take few hours for symptoms to appear. Vaccinators should be able to distinguish anaphylaxis from fainting and vasovagal syncope, a neurovascular reaction that leads to fainting, as well as anxiety and breath-holding spells, which are all common benign adverse events.

When to contact your doctor

Vaccine reactions are rare. However, they may occur up to 3 days after getting vaccinated. Contacting your doctor/ healthcare practitioner is vital in case of following reactions within 3 days of receiving the vaccine:


swelling of the face or mouth

trouble breathing

very pale color and serious drowsiness

high fever (over 40°C)

convulsions or seizures

other serious symptoms, such as numbness

In case of a severe allergic reaction after leaving the vaccination site, call 911.

IM Injection program and Injection Technique Certificate programs-ONLINE/ BLENDED- training/ certificate program at Springfield College helps prepare you get skills needed for a challenging career in physician’s offices, hospitals or medical clinics. Students learn details and techniques of SC, ID, IM, Depot injections, various vaccines for children and adults, safe and effective Injection techniques, patient communication and preparations in healthcare.


Bartley’s Square

1- Bartley Bull Parkway, Suite # 19,

(Across Shoppers World Brampton, Above Food Basics)

Brampton, ON, L6W 3T7

Tel: 905-216-1600; 416-456-6689;647-609-3829


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