1/3 of Vaccine Recipients Have Adverse Reaction

  • By Bae Jun-yong

    March 16, 2021 11:09

    Nearly one-third or 32.8 percent of people who have received their coronavirus vaccination reported adverse reactions such as fever and muscle aches, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said Monday.

    That is three times some 10 percent reported by the U.K. government.

    The findings were based on a survey of 18,000 people who have been injected here. Korea is currently administering mostly AstraZeneca's vaccine, although some Pfizer doses have been given.

    According to the KDCA, side effects are more common in younger people.

    Common symptoms are pain in the area of injection, muscle aches, fatigue, headache and fever. Health officials said most of the symptoms are a natural reaction in the process of developing immunity, but experts say the frequency of symptoms could instill fears over the vaccine.

    A medical worker fills a syringe with a dose of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine at a hospital in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province on March 4. /Newsis

    Last week the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety authorized the AstraZeneca vaccine for people over 65, so geriatric hospitals and care homes started asking patients whether they will take the injection, which will begin next week, but fewer than half agreed.

    One staffer at a care home in Seoul's Guro district said, "Most families of patients under 65 gave their authorization when the vaccination first started last month, but only half of the families of over-65s are giving permission now and the situation is the same at other nursing homes around here."

    There are calls for health officials to take a closer look at what is causing the side effects instead of passing them off as minor symptoms. 

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