Technical guideline for the inoculation of COVID-19 vaccines

By Zou Shuo and Ma Chi | | Updated: 2021-03-31 15:32
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An elderly woman receives a COVID-19 vaccine shot at a community in Beijing's Haidian district on March 14, 2021. [Photo/Xinhua]

4. Vaccination recommendations for specific groups

(1) People aged 60 or above

People aged 60 or above are at higher risk of developing severe symptoms or dying after being infected with the novel coronavirus. At present, there are limited phase III clinical trials of the four vaccines with conditional approval for market use on this group of people and there is no data on the protection efficacy of the vaccines for this group.

However, the data of phase I and II clinical trials has shown that the vaccines are safe. The concentration of vaccine-induced neutralizing antibody is slightly lower than observed in people aged between 18 and 59, but the positive conversion rate of the neutralizing antibody is similar, suggesting that the vaccines provide a certain degree of protection for people aged 60 or above.

Thus, vaccination is recommended for this age group.

(2) People under 18

No clinical trial data has been obtained for people in this age group, so it is not recommended that people under 18 be vaccinated.

(3) People with chronic diseases

People with chronic diseases are at higher risk of developing severe symptoms or dying after being infected with the novel coronavirus. Patients in stable condition and whose chronic diseases are well-controlled are recommended for vaccination.

A couple hold their children in Shenyang, Liaoning province. [Photo by LI HAO/CHINA DAILY]

(4) Women of childbearing age or breastfeeding women

If you get pregnant after vaccination or get the vaccine without knowing you are pregnant, it is not recommended to take special medical measures (such as termination of pregnancy) because of the vaccination. It is recommended to do a pregnancy check and follow-up checks. For women who plan to have child, there is no need to delay pregnancy just because of the vaccination.

Although there is currently no clinical research data on the impact of COVID-19 vaccines on breastfeeding women and infants, it is recommended that breastfeeding women who are at higher risk of infections (such as medical staff) be vaccinated.

Considering the importance of breastfeeding to the health of infants and young children and according to internationally accepted practices, breastfeeding women are recommended to continue breastfeeding after being vaccinated.

(5) People with impaired immunity

People with impaired immunity are at higher risk of developing severe symptoms or dying after being infected with the novel coronavirus. There is currently no data on the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines for this group of people (such as people with malignant tumors, nephrotic syndrome and AIDS) and people infected with HIV.

The immune response and protection effect of this group of people after vaccination may be reduced. Inactivated vaccines and the recombinant subunit vaccine are recommended; for the adenovirus vector vaccine, it is recommended that individuals are fully informed and fully consider the benefits and the risks before vaccination.

(6) People who have been infected with the novel coronavirus

Existing research data shows that there are rare cases of re-infection within six months after being infected with the novel coronavirus. People who have been infected (confirmed patients or asymptomatic cases) can receive one dose of vaccine after six months on the basis of full notification.

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