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Thousands in the United Kingdom are the first to receive Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine

In the United States, Pfizer will have its vaccine review with the FDA tomorrow, December 10.

Susan Morse, Managing Editor

Margaret Keenan, 90, is the first patient in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine. (Getty Images photo by Jacob King) Margaret Keenan, 90, is the first patient in the United Kingdom to receive the Pfizer/BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine. (Getty Images photo by Jacob King)

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine rollout continues in the United Kingdom after healthcare workers and elderly individuals became the first in the world to receive the shot.

But after two healthcare workers suffered adverse reactions to the vaccine, National Health Service England warned that people with a "significant history of allergic reactions" should not be given the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine, according to CNN.  Both staff members reportedly had a significant history of allergic reactions and carried adrenaline autoinjectors.

Most reactions have been mild and have been compared to what is experienced after getting a flu shot, such as a sore arm at the injection site. Thousands in the UK were vaccinated on Tuesday.

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The vaccine offers some protection after the first dose, but two doses are required for full protection, according to documents released Tuesday by the Food and Drug Administration, ahead of Pfizer's meeting with the FDA tomorrow. The Pfizer vaccine is reportedly 95% effective in protecting against the coronavirus.

In the United States, Pfizer and Moderna are ready to go with their COVID-19 vaccines, according to Operation Warp Speed, with distribution to front-line workers and patients in long-term care facilities to be the first in this country to start receiving the vaccines this month. 

Both drug companies have filed for emergency use authorization with the Food and Drug Administration. 

The FDA's vaccine advisory committee will review emergency use authorization for the Pfizer vaccine on Thursday, December 10, and the Moderna vaccine on Thursday, December 17.

See our continuing vaccine coverage here:

Eli Lilly and UnitedHealth Group partner on COVID-19 antibody treatment for high-risk individuals

Operation Warp Speed is looking to start distributing COVID-19 vaccine by mid-month

Moderna seeks regulatory authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine

HHS will begin allocating Regeneron's COVID-19 therapeutic this week

HHS partners with chain and independent pharmacies to increase access to future COVID-19 vaccines

COVID-19 vaccine distribution will begin within 24 hours of an emergency use authorization

Moderna vaccine candidate shows 94.5% efficacy against COVID-19

Pfizer touts new COVID-19 vaccine, calling it '90% effective'

Medicare beneficiaries can get monoclonal antibody COVID-19 treatments at no cost

FDA grants emergency use authorization for Eli Lilly antibody treatment for COVID-19

Twitter: @SusanJMorse
Email the writer: susan.morse@himssmedia.com