Information About COVID Vaccine for Kidney Patients

India has approved two made in India vaccines – Oxford-AstraZeneca’s ‘Covishield’ and Bharat Biotech’s ‘Covaxin’ for emergency use authorisation.

Patients with kidney disease such as those on dialysis , those with kidney transplants and those with significant kidney disease are at high risk of becoming very sick if they get COVID 19 infection

We would strongly recommend that you do have the vaccine as this will protect the large majority. The risks of becoming very sick with COVID-19 are far higher than an extremely small risk of side effects from vaccination.

The vaccines being rolled out are suitable for kidney patients (whether transplant, dialysis or other kidney conditions) and should be taken, based on advice from your kidney doctor.

There is no evidence that the vaccines themselves could cause infection in patients who are on immunosuppressive drugs for a kidney transplant or some types of kidney disease. There is no evidence that the vaccine would lead to rejection of a kidney transplant.

People with kidney disease taking immunosuppressants may have a weaker response to the vaccines, but they are likely to work well enough to make it worthwhile having the vaccine, particularly as people taking immunosuppressants are at higher risk of getting COVID-19 infection

Clinical trial results published for the vaccines show that the efficacy of the vaccine more than 14 days after the second dose was 70·4% . Seventy per cent efficacy means that, in the clinical trials, there were 70% fewer cases of Covid-19 in people who had the vaccine compared to the people who had no vaccine.

The vaccine may not offer 100% protection but the severity of the infection is much less in people who received the vaccine for Covid-19 and need for hospital admission is less.

You will need two doses of the vaccine to achieve optimal protection against COVID 19. These should be taken about 3-4 weeks apart. Even after you’ve had your vaccine, you should continue to wear a mask,practice social distancing until large numbers of people in the general population have also been vaccinated and infection rates in the community have come down.

If you have any questions or concerns please speak to your kidney doctors.

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