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VERIFY: Who should NOT get vaccinated for COVID-19?

While most people are encouraged to get vaccinated, the CDC says people who've had an allergic reaction to any ingredients in the COVID-19 vaccines should not.

PORTLAND, Ore — The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says the COVID-19 vaccines currently available for emergency use "have been shown to be safe and effective." 

The agency says data from Pfizer, Moderna and clinical trials show that for most people, the benefits of the vaccines outweigh the potential harm of getting infected with the coronavirus. 

But there are certain cases in which people should actually avoid getting vaccinated. 

KGW's VERIFY team wanted to find out, who should not get a COVID-19 vaccine? 

It pretty much comes down to allergies. 

According to the CDC, anyone who's had an immediate allergic reaction - even if was not severe - to any ingredient in either of the two available COVID-19 vaccines should not be vaccinated.

The same goes for anyone who's had a severe reaction. There have been some reports of severe reactions, known as anaphylaxis, to the COVID-19 vaccines, but the CDC says they are rare. 

One of the ingredients in both vaccines is called polyethylene glycol (PEG). People who are allergic to PEG or polysorbate, which is not a vaccine ingredient but is closely related to PEG, are also advised not to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

See ingredients of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines below.

Health officials advise anyone who's had an immediate or severe allergic reaction to the first dose of either vaccine should not get the second dose.

People who've had an allergic reaction to any other vaccine or injectable therapy for another disease should ask their doctor if they should get vaccinated. 

The CDC says some people have reportedly experienced allergic reactions such as hives, swelling and wheezing within about four hours after getting a COVID-19 vaccine. 

These reactions are not to be confused with side effects that, while unpleasant, are normal reactions to the vaccines. 

Common side effects of the COVID-19 vaccines fever, chills, fatigue, headache and pain and swelling of the arm in which the shot was administered. 

To mitigate the fever, the CDC says to drink plenty of fluids and dress lightly. To reduce pain, use or exercise your arm and apply a cool, wet washcloth over the area of injection. 

If you think you might be having a severe allergic reaction after leaving the vaccination site, call 911 immediately. 

It's worth noting that more than 70,000 people participated in clinical trials for the COVID-19 vaccines before they were determined to be safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. 

The CDC says a number of vaccine safety monitoring systems are being used to watch for adverse reactions and possible side effects to the vaccines that may not have been seen in clinical trials. 

"This monitoring is critical to help ensure that the benefits continue to outweigh the risks for people who receive vaccines," the CDC's website says.

Ingredients of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine:

mRNA, lipids ((4-hydroxybutyl)azanediyl)bis(hexane-6,1-diyl)bis(2-hexyldecanoate), 2 [(polyethylene glycol)-2000]-N,N-ditetradecylacetamide, 1,2-Distearoyl-sn-glycero-3- phosphocholine, and cholesterol), potassium chloride, monobasic potassium phosphate, sodium chloride, dibasic sodium phosphate dihydrate and sucrose.

Ingredients of Moderna vaccine:

mRNA, lipids (SM-102, polyethylene glycol [PEG] 2000 dimyristoyl glycerol [DMG], cholesterol, and 1,2-distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine [DSPC]), tromethamine, tromethamine hydrochloride, acetic acid, sodium acetate and sucrose.

Do you have something you want us to VERIFY? Let us know. Email us at Verify@KGW.com

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