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DIN DIN name Active Ingredient(s) Strength Dosage Form Route of Administration

Summary Reports

Summary Basis of Decision
Regulatory Decision Summary
Interim Order Respecting the Importation, Sale and Advertising of Drugs for Use in Relation to COVID-19
Product Monograph

Consumer Information

This information was provided by the drug’s manufacturer when this drug product was approved for sale in Canada. It is designed for consumers and care givers. It is a summary of information about the drug and will not tell you everything about the drug. Contact your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about the drug.

What the medication is used for

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine is a vaccine used to prevent COVID-19 disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine can be given to people from 16 years of age and older.

What it does

The vaccine causes our body to produce protection (such as antibodies) that prevent the COVID-19 virus from entering our cells to make us sick. The vaccine uses a new method (messenger RNA - mRNA, the genetic code for a piece of the virus) to help our bodies make protection against the virus. The vaccine is given by injection with a needle in the upper arm and will require two doses given 21 days apart.

You cannot get COVID-19 from the vaccine.

As with any vaccine, Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine may not fully protect all those who receive it. Even after you have had both doses of the vaccine, continue to follow the recommendations of local public health officials to prevent spread of COVID-19.

When it should not be used

You should not receive Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine if:

  • you are allergic to any of the ingredients in this vaccine (see What the medicinal ingredient is and What the non-medicinal ingredients are)
  • you had a severe allergic reaction after a previous dose of this vaccine
  • you have any symptoms that could be due to COVID-19. Talk with your healthcare professional about your symptoms and getting a COVID-19 test. Your healthcare professional will advise you when you are able to receive the vaccine.
What the medicinal ingredient is

Medicinal ingredient: mRNA

What the non-medicinal ingredients are

Non-medicinal ingredients:

  • ALC-0315 = ((4-hydroxybutyl)azanediyl)bis(hexane-6,1-diyl)bis(2-hexyldecanoate)
  • ALC-0159 = 2-[(polyethylene glycol)-2000]-N,N-ditetradecylacetamide
  • 1,2-Distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine
  • cholesterol
  • dibasic sodium phosphate dihydrate
  • monobasic potassium phosphate
  • potassium chloride
  • sodium chloride
  • sucrose
  • water for injection
What dosage form it comes in

White to off-white suspension (to be diluted) provided in a multiple dose vial of 6 doses.

After dilution, the vial contains 6 doses of 0.3 mL, with 30 micrograms mRNA each.

Warnings and precautions

To help avoid side effects and ensure proper use, talk to your healthcare professional before you receive Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine. Talk about any health conditions or problems you may have, including if you:

  • have had any problems following previous administration of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine such as an allergic reaction or breathing problems.
  • have any allergies
  • have a weakened immune system due to a medical condition or are on a medicine that affects your immune system.
  • have a bleeding problem, bruise easily or use a blood thinning medication
  • are pregnant, think you may be pregnant or plan to become pregnant
  • are breast-feeding

Other warnings you should know about:

It may take until 7 days after the second dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to develop protection against COVID-19. As with any vaccine, Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine may not fully protect all those who receive it.

Interactions with this medication

Tell your healthcare professional about all the medicines you take, including any drugs, vitamins, minerals, natural supplements or alternative medicines.

There is no information on the use of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine with other vaccines.

Tell your healthcare professional if you have recently received any other vaccine.

Proper use of this medication

How Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine is given:

Usual Dose

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine is given after dilution as an injection of 0.3 mL into a muscle of your upper arm.

You will receive 2 injections, given 21 days apart. It is very important that you return for the second injection, or the vaccine may not work as well.

If you have any further questions on the use of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, ask your healthcare professional.


In the event of suspected overdose with Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, contact your regional poison control centre.

Missed Dose

If you forget to go back to your healthcare professional at the scheduled time for your next dose, ask your healthcare professional for advice.

Side effects and what to do about them

Like all vaccines, Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine can cause side effects.

Side effects may occur at the following frequencies:

Very common: may affect more than 1 in 10 people

  • injection site pain
  • tiredness
  • headache
  • muscle pain
  • chills
  • joint pain
  • fever

Common: may affect more than 1 in 100 and up to 1 in 10 people

  • injection site redness
  • injection site swelling
  • nausea

Uncommon: may affect up to 1 in 100 people

  • enlarged lymph nodes
  • feeling unwell

Non-severe allergic reactions (such as rash, itching, hives or swelling of the face) and severe allergic reactions have been reported.

These are not all the possible side effects you may have when taking Pfizer-BioNTech COVID- 19 Vaccine. If you experience any side effects not listed here, tell your healthcare professional.

There is a remote chance that Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine could cause a severe allergic reaction. A severe allergic reaction would usually occur within a few minutes to one hour after getting a dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine. For this reason, your vaccination provider may ask you to stay at the place where you received your vaccine for monitoring after vaccination. Should you develop any serious symptoms or symptoms that could be an allergic reaction, seek medical attention right away. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include:

  • hives (bumps on the skin that are often very itchy)
  • swelling of the face, tongue or throat
  • difficulty breathing
  • a fast heartbeat
  • dizziness and weakness

If you experience a severe allergic reaction, call 9-1-1, or go to the nearest hospital.

Your health care provider should inform your local public health department of any serious side effects after vaccination.

How to store

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine should be stored, supplied and administered by a healthcare professional.

Keep out of reach and sight of children.

Reporting side effects

Reporting Suspected Side Effects for Vaccines

For the general public: Should you experience a side effect following immunization, please report it to your healthcare professional.

Should you require information related to the management of the side effect, please contact your healthcare professional. The Public Health Agency of Canada, Health Canada and Pfizer Canada ULC cannot provide medical advice.

For healthcare professionals: If a patient experiences a side effect following immunization, please complete the Adverse Events Following Immunization (AEFI) Form appropriate for your province/territory ( and send it to your local Health Unit.

More information

Health Canada has authorized the sale of this COVID-19 vaccine under an Interim Order.

This leaflet is a summary and will not tell you everything about this vaccine. Talk to your healthcare professional about your medical condition and treatment and ask if there is any new information about Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine.

If you want more information about Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine:

This leaflet was prepared by Pfizer Canada ULC.

Last Revised: March 3, 2021

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