Name: Dr Savita Bhat Age: 50 years
Occupation: Senior Ophthalmologist
Before the vaccination
Before I received my first and second doses of COVID 19 vaccination, I made sure that I did not have any active upper respiratory tract infections
such as cough and cold. I did not take any preventive medication before my vaccination.
The vaccination process
On the day of vaccination, I received a message from the local health and welfare body mentioning the
time of vaccination and details of the vaccination centre. I was also asked to carry my proof of identification such as Aadhar card or driving license or passport. I carried my hospital identification along with other documents.
On reaching the vaccination centre, l was asked to fill up a self-declaration form designed by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, mentioning details such as current medication, health conditions, whether l had any symptoms of cold and cough or recovered from COVID 19 disease in the recent past. The form also consisted of questions such as in case of having COVID 19 disease, how many days of hospitalisation were recommended to me and where was I hospitalised.
Resolving the side effects
The most common side effects that we witnessed in our hospital are severe body ache, chills, mild fever and injection site pain that lasted for a maximum of 48 hours. I did not experience any major symptoms. In 24 hours after vaccination, I had experienced some minor ailments such as soreness and pain in the injected arm. Mer 24 hours, I experienced chills that lasted for one hour.
I was advised by the vaccine officers at the centre to take medications immediately after vaccination to mitigate side effects such as acidity, stomach pain, fever, chills and injection site pain. I followed their advice and recovered from post-injection ailments very soon. It did not disturb my routine.
Benefits of COVID 19 vaccination
There is a lot of myth against the COVID 19 vaccination and some people are also spreading rumours about the adverse effects of vaccination. As a physician, I would like to advise people to take the vaccination, especially those with health condition such as Diabetes as we are witnessing a surge in the number of infected people. Frontline workers who are exposed to COVID 19 infection such as healthcare workers and emergency service personnel, elderly people, people with chronic health conditions are advised to take vaccination to protect them from contracting the disease or experience serious illness.
The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has stated that the vaccines that are currently available in India can prevent severe hospitalisation due to COVID 19 disease, in people with comorbidities. Though these vaccines provide protection from developing severe illness due to COVID 19 disease, a vaccinated person may still have a chance of getting the infection or become a potential carrier of the infection. So it is advisable to continue wearing face masks, follow the social distancing protocols and sanitise your hands frequently using soap or a hand sanitiser. In the case of elderly people or people with health conditions, it is advised to consult the physician and obtain a medical certificate before taking the vaccination. By following safety protocols and health guidelines, we can all fight and defeat the COVID 19 infection together.
Dr Savita Bhat is a Senior Ophthalmologist.