Two more Australians suffer Covid vaccine allergic reactions

Two people in Western Australia have suffered allergic reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine.

WA’s chief health officer Andrew Robertson revealed the two new incidents on Wednesday saying they had both been reported to the Therapeutic Goods Administration. 

One person had just received the Pfizer vaccine while the other person was given the AstraZeneca jab. 

Two people in WA have had an allergic reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine (pictured: the pfizer vaccine being prepared at the Hyatt Perth hotel quarantine in February) 

‘Both have a history of previous allergic reactions and both individuals responded well to a single dose of adrenaline and recovered under observation without further incident,’ Dr Robertson said in a statement. 

He said people should be be deterred from being immunised despite the isolated bad reactions. 

‘All vaccination clinics in WA are well equipped to deal with adverse reactions should they occur and any person reported as having a suspected allergic reaction after COVID vaccination is offered clinical assessment by expert immunologists to determine optimal management going forward,’ he said. 

He also said those getting vaccinated are monitored for 15 minutes afterward in line with TGA guidelines and for those with a history of allergies that is doubled to 30 minutes. 

Nearly 23,000 people in the state have been vaccinated for COVID-19 with 13,292 getting the Pfizer product and 9652 the AstraZeneca version. 

The TGA said on Wednesday they would review the number of reports of allergic reactions to see if they were unusually high. 

Earlier this week Queensland authorities sent out an alert after four people had allergic reactions to the COVID-19 vaccine. 

The people in Bundaberg, Toowoomba, and two in Ipswich, all had anaphylactic reactions to the AstraZeneca jab in past 48 hours.

They also told the Therapeutic Goods Administration of the incidents.

The TGA is investigating the number of allergic reactions to see if they are unusually high (pictured: a patient gets the AstraZeneca jab)

The TGA is investigating the number of allergic reactions to see if they are unusually high (pictured: a patient gets the AstraZeneca jab) 

Queensland Health director-general John Wakefield said allergic reactions are rare, but ‘not a surprise’.

He said a Gold Coast nurse had an anaphylactic reaction to the Pfizer jab earlier this month.

‘We have had an anaphylaxis with Pfizer and we expect to get more,’ Dr Wakefield told reporters.

‘The issue with this is getting four within a 48-hour period. We probably need to have a closer look at it.’

Anyone in Queensland with a history of anaphylaxis is also being urged to delay getting the vaccine.

‘The right thing for us to do is to preserve the trust of our Queenslanders and just add that extra blanket of safety whilst this is being worked out,’ Dr Wakefield said.

Federal Health Secretary Brendan Murphy said people shouldn’t delay their vaccination, but discuss it with their doctor.

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said the TGA’s initial assessment had found the vaccines to be safe and effective.

‘We don’t believe they should delay vaccination,’ he told reporters.

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said both jabs were safe for the majority of the population.

There are clear warnings for people allergic to any ingredients in the vaccines and pregnant or breast-feeding women, she said.

‘We are not surprised we’re seeing allergic reactions, but we do want to let the public know,’ Ms D’Ath said.

The minister dismissed criticism about the state’s comparatively slower vaccine rollout.

She said the state needed to have enough supplies on hand to give every person two doses.

Medical workers prepare the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine at the Hyatt Perth quarantine hotel in Perth (pictured)

Medical workers prepare the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine at the Hyatt Perth quarantine hotel in Perth (pictured) 

Ms D’Ath said Queensland was not being told in advance how much vaccine was being delivered and when.

‘So to simply talk about figures and not put a context around it is just a bit misleading,’ she said.

Brisbane’s hospital, aged care facilities and disability providers are also more likely to come out of lockdown on Friday after no new cases of community virus transmission were reported.

The lockdown began when a doctor tested positive on Friday after working at Princess Alexandra Hospital and visiting four venues in the city’s south on Thursday.

The woman was infected by a patient who also infected a person staying in a separate room at Brisbane’s Hotel Grand Chancellor quarantine facility.

Ms D’Ath said about 330 of 428 close contacts of the doctor have tested negative for the virus, while no other cases have been reported among PA hospital staff or hotel workers and guests.

The minister said the lack of community transmission after almost seven days meant the lockdown could end on Friday.

‘We are in a very good position going forward over the next couple of days that will hopefully see us be able to lift those restrictions,’ she said.

Queensland reported six new cases of coronavirus on Wednesday, all from overseas and already in hotel quarantine.