UAE - Some fully vaccinated community members in Abu Dhabi now have the option to “take a different Covid-19 vaccine type” than previously received.
This is for the first time Abu Dhabi is permitting mixing of Covid-19 vaccines. While the Sinopharm vaccine was approved for mass use since last year, Abu Dhabi okayed the Pfizer-BioNTech in April this year. So, those who have received two doses of the Sinopharm vaccine can voluntarily take the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at the Mubadala Health vaccination centre.
Separately, a Reuters report said the UAE and Bahrain have made the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine available as a “booster shot” to those who initially received Sinopharm. Reuters quotes a representative of Mubadala Health saying that in Abu Dhabi, the booster shot is available three months after the second shot had been administered.
Meanwhile, a call centre executive at Mubadala Health vaccination centre told Khaleej Times that the vaccine is administered only through prior appointments and on furnishing of signed consent form from a doctor. There are two consent forms available for free at the centres. One to be filled by the applicant and another by a physician. Both the forms are titled: ‘Consent to take different Covid-19 vaccine type, than the previously received vaccine type’.
“If you have taken Sinopharm before and if you want to take Pfizer, you must book an appointment. You must fill a form. You must take the form to a general doctor, who needs to sign it. You must bring it during your appointment. This is how you could get the Pfizer vaccine if you took Sinopharm before. You can take the Pfizer vaccine three months after the second dose of Sinopharm,” the staff said.
According to the form ‘for the use of the physician’, a doctor needs to verify the dates of the earlier doses and then inform an application that there is no evidence based scientific studies regarding the safety and efficacy of the vaccine in case of combining different Covid-19 vaccines. A doctor must tell the applicant about the common side effects of taking the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. After assessing the medical fitness, the doctor can sign the form and give permission to get the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
A fully vaccinated resident who went to Capital Health Screening Centre, part of Mubadala Healthcare’s network, at Al Jazira Sports Club said the earliest appointment was only by the end of June.
“I am not taking the Pfizer vaccine now. I just wanted to verify if this was true as we haven’t heard anything officially yet from the health authorities on mixing of two vaccine types,” he said.
An applicant is also giving consent to give a blood sample in future and contribute to clinical research.
People can call 8004959 to book appointments or email to MCV@telemed.ae
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