Healthcare professionals are also being encouraged to report suspected side effects.
The guidance has been issued following two reports of anaphylaxis and one report of a possible allergic reaction following immunisation.
Anaphylaxis is a known, although very rare, side effect with any vaccine and to put the issue into context, figures suggest that around 20,000 NHS workers and patients have received the vaccine since its initial rollout earlier this week.
The guidance reads; “Any person with a history of anaphylaxis to a vaccine, medicine or food should not receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. A second dose should not be given to anyone who has experienced anaphylaxis following administration of the first dose of this vaccine.”
Members of the public and healthcare professionals are also being encouraged to report suspected side effects through the Yellow Card scheme.
The benefits outweigh the risks.
Dr June Raine, Chief Executive of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), said: “Today we convened an Expert Group of the Commission on Human Medicines (CHM), attended by experts in allergy and clinical immunology, to robustly review these reports to consider any possible mitigation on the rare risk of anaphylaxis.
“Anaphylaxis is a known, although very rare, side effect with any vaccine. Most people will not get anaphylaxis and the benefits in protecting people against COVID-19 outweigh the risks.
“Anyone due to receive their vaccine should continue with their appointment and discuss any questions or medical history of serious allergies with the healthcare professional prior to getting the jab.
“You can be completely confident that this vaccine has met the MHRA’s robust standards of safety, quality and effectiveness. The safety data has also been critically assessed by the government’s independent advisory body, the Commission on Human Medicines. No vaccine would be approved unless it meets these stringent standards – on that you can be sure.