Ten things you need to know about Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines

U.S. Food and Drug Administration (USFDA), a federal agency which authorizes drugs and vaccines in the United States, has recently approved two COVID-19 vaccines. As distribution of vaccines has been started and vaccines will become more and more available in near future, here are ten things that you need to know about COVID-19 vaccines approved:

QuestionsPfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine1,3,4Moderna COVID-19 vaccine2,3,4
How effective is the vaccine in OVERALL population?95% effective in preventing COVID-19 among clinical trial participants who were tracked for a median of two months after getting their second dose. 0.04% clinical trial participants who received the vaccine developed COVID-19 compared to 0.64% clinical trial participants who received placebo (an inactive substance used as a control)94.5% effective in preventing COVID-19 among clinical trial participants who were tracked for a median of seven weeks after getting their second dose. 0.04% clinical trial participants who received the vaccine developed COVID-19 compared to 0.88% clinical trial participants who received placebo
How effective is the vaccine in eldelry people 93.7% effective in people ages 56 and older100% effective in people ages 65 and older
How effective is the vaccine in MEN?95.3% effective95.5% effective
How effective is the vaccine in WOMEN?93.9% effective93.5% effective
How effective is the vaccine in people with pre-existing medical conditions?95.3% effective in patients with chronic lung disease, significant cardiac disease, diabetes, liver disease, HIV, severe obesity, cancer, kidney disease, dementia and vascular disease.95.9% effective in patients with chronic lung disease, significant cardiac disease, diabetes, liver disease, HIV and severe obesity.
Who can get a vaccine?People 16 years old and olderPeople 18 years old and older
Who can NOT get a vaccine?CDC recommends that people with a severe allergic reaction to any ingredient in a COVID-19 vaccine should not take a vaccine and should consult a doctor. No safety data available in patients with HIV or weakened immune system or autoimmune diseases.CDC recommends that people with a severe allergic reaction to any ingredient in a COVID-19 vaccine should not take a vaccine and should consult a doctor. No safety data available in patients with HIV or weakened immune system or autoimmune diseases.
Number of shots required for vaccine to be fully effective2 shots, 21 days apart2 shots, 28 days apart.
Side effectsPain around the injection site, fatigue, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever. Pain around the injection site, fatigue, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever. 
Price$19.50 per dose for first 100 million doses$25-$37 per dose

References:

  1. FDA briefing document, Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine. Available at https://www.fda.gov/media/144245/download
  2. FDA briefing document, Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine. Available at https://www.fda.gov/media/144434/download
  3. COVID-19 vaccines, Available at https://www.fda.gov/emergency-preparedness-and-response/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/covid-19-vaccines
  4. How the COVID-19 vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer compare head to head. Available at https://www.latimes.com/science/story/2020-12-15/how-the-covid-19-vaccines-from-moderna-and-pfizer-compare-head-to-head

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