Utah Poison Control Center Supports COVID-19 Vaccination Efforts and Helps Track Side Effects

Man gets vaccine

This update was provided by the Utah Poison Control Center. Michael Moss, MD, Medical Director and Amberly Johnson, PharmD, Managing Director contributed to this post.

As the state of Utah continues its COVID-19 vaccination program, the Utah Poison Control Center has partnered with the Utah Department of Health to help the public get advice on any side effects they may experience from a COVID-19 vaccine.

Recently, rumors on social media have circulated that poison centers say that COVID-19 vaccines are unsafe.

At the Utah Poison Control Center, our team of physicians, pharmacists, and nurses trained in toxicology all fully support the ongoing efforts to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccinate all eligible individuals in Utah.

The American College of Medical Toxicology and American Academy of Emergency Medicine, two nationally-recognized physician groups, announced their support for COVID-19 vaccines as safe and effective.

We echo their statement and also strongly recommend vaccination with the currently authorized COVID-19 vaccines.

While the vaccines do cause side effects such as pain, swelling, fatigue, and fever, these symptoms are generally mild and go away within 1-2 days.

Rarely, vaccines may cause severe allergic reactions called anaphylaxis. The number of patients experiencing anaphylaxis from COVID-19 vaccines is similar to other vaccines such as the influenza vaccine (https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7008e3.htm).

The Utah Poison Control Center is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by healthcare professionals trained in toxicology and vaccine side effects to answer questions about adverse effects from COVID-19 vaccines.

Additionally, patients may use the CDC V-safe platform (vsafe.cdc.gov) to report side effects to the CDC. We encourage healthcare professionals to use the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS vaers.hss.gov) to report adverse events related to COVID-19 vaccines.

The Utah Poison Control Center can be reached at any time at 1-800-222-1222.