Bell’s palsy patient not covered by Covid-19 insurance
SSM will investigate whether there are links to vaccination, and will draw up new guidelines if necessary.
The 27-year-old man whose face froze following his Covid-19 inoculation on 20 March is not covered by the government’s insurance programme, it has been revealed.
Tai Wa Hou, who heads the Health Bureau’s (SSM) Covid-19 vaccination programme said the scheme covers local residents only for “death or severe physical disability,” confirmed to be caused by Covid-19 vaccines. “The facial nerve paralysis, in this case, is not considered as severe physical disability and thus will not be covered,” he added.
Tai noted that the link between the vaccination and facial nerve paralysis has not been confirmed as yet, the Macau Daily Times reported.
Tai vowed that the results of an investigation into whether the incident is related to mRNA vaccine will be laid bare to the public in due course.
If the link between facial paralysis, also known as Bell’s palsy, and vaccination is confirmed, the SSM will provide guidelines for the concerned individual regarding the inoculation with the second dose.
“If it’s proven as a coincidental event, the individual can proceed with the original plan to take the second jab,” Tai added.
Leong Iek Hou, coordinator at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, emphasised that “the adverse event” is not deemed identical to “the side effects” following the jabs.
As of 4 pm yesterday, the event was the second severe case among the city’s 353 reported adverse events after vaccination.
Medical experts say that Bell’s palsy is not considered as rare in Macao, as it occurs in two out of 100,000 people and in general, it takes around three to six months for the symptoms of facial nerve paralysis to go away.