Vaccination remains one of the most important medical interventions for preventing illnesses, death, and controlling pandemics. WHO has approved some vaccines for the control of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, including the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine.
The COVISHIELD brand which is currently being used in Nigeria is manufactured by the Serum Institute of India. The COVISHIELD brand is used in over 71 countries including the UK, Canada, India, and Brazil.
It has a 76% efficacy rate against symptomatic COVID-19 and 100% effective in stopping severe infection.
The vaccine has been confirmed safe by World Health Organization (WHO), European Medicines Agency (EMA), US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA), and Nigeria’s National Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC).
Investigations reveal that there is no evidence of a causal link between the vaccine and blood clot formation. There is extensive data showing that the vaccine is safe and effective, and especially good at preventing severe illness and death from COVID-19.
Side effects are short-term and include local pain around the injection site, fever, headache, and other mild symptoms.
The Interval Between Doses: WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) recommendation is that the two doses of the vaccine be given intramuscularly (0.5ml each) with an interval of 8 to 12 weeks (2-3 months).
Mixing Vaccines: WHO’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) recommendation is that the same vaccine should be used for both doses.