Help make vaccines better for everyone this #MedsafetyWeek

As DHBs around the country race to meet the 90% double-vaccination rate that will shift us into the new traffic light system, record numbers of vaccinations are happening all over New Zealand. While the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has been shown to be safe for almost everyone over the age of 12 to take (with a variation arriving in the country soon for those aged 5 – 11), no medicine is ever 100 percent safe.

Like all medicines, side effects can happen. Most are mild and short-lived. For those that do experience side effects from the Covid vaccine – or any other vaccines – did you know you can report these to Centre for Adverse Reactions Monitoring (CARM)?

From 1 -7 November, Medsafe is running its sixth annual #MedSafetyWeek, a campaign that encourages people to report suspected side effects to help make vaccines better for everyone.

“Reporting suspected side effects to the Centre for Adverse Reactions Monitoring plays a key role in helping Medsafe monitor the safety of all vaccines. If a safety concern is identified, we can take action and communicate this to New Zealanders,” says Medsafe’s Group Manager, Chris James.

“This campaign comes at a crucial time when millions of people are being vaccinated against COVID-19 but is also applicable to all vaccines.”

How do I report suspected side effects?

Anyone who experiences a suspected side effect following vaccination is encouraged to report it to CARM. You don’t have to be a health professional to submit a report and you don’t need to be certain that the reaction was caused by the vaccine.

If you would like to report suspected side effects from a COVID-19 vaccine, follow this link: https://report.vaccine.covid19.govt.nz

To report suspected side effects from any other vaccine, you can do so at this link: https://nzphvc.otago.ac.nz/reporting/

These reports are monitored by CARM, Medsafe and the Ministry of Health to identify any patterns. The reports are evaluated alongside information from the scientific literature and international medicine regulators to see if there is any link to vaccination.

About Mason Head

Mason Head
Content Creator and Publication Lead at Eldernet

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