JIS News

The Ministry of Health and Wellness is advising Jamaicans not to take medication to mask flu-like symptoms in order to get the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine.

Director of the Family Health Unit in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Dr. Melody Ennis, told JIS News that the vaccine will not be administered to persons who are showing signs of being unwell, such as those having an elevated temperature, coughing and/or sneezing.

“If you are sick, let’s say you have a 103-104 degree temperature, if you take Panadol and mask your symptoms and then appear at the vaccination site, you will be afebrile (not having a fever), so when we do your temperature check it (the fever) won’t show. If you took antihistamines, you won’t be coughing and sniffling; however, you’re not doing yourself any justice,” she pointed out.

“If you are ill and having those symptoms, it takes about five days to get over them and you’ll get the vaccine after that, so don’t mask the symptoms with the Panadol to get the vaccine. Just wait out the five days and once you’re okay and you’re within the age range, you’ll be offered and given the vaccine,” she continued.

For persons with comorbidities or underlying illnesses, Dr. Ennis said that “if you are ill, where you possibly need hospitalisation or you are not controlled in your medication, then we will not offer you the vaccine at this time”.

The Family Health Director pointed out that the procedure is the same as with the routine immunisation of a child where, if the youngster is unwell, the vaccine will not be administered.

She gave the assurance that every Jamaican will have access to the vaccine, so there is no need for persons to rush to receive the jab if they are ill.

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