With increased eligibility to receive the COVID-19 vaccine coupled with the forthcoming Holy Month of…
What Should I Do? – Should I Get the COVID-19 Vaccine While Fasting?
I. Details About the Situation
Hasnain has just been informed that he is now eligible for the Covid-19 vaccine, and his local medical clinic is offering the vaccine next week, also coinciding with the month of Ramadan. Hasnain has been wondering whether or not it is permissible for him to get vaccinated while fasting, but he has to make a quick decision for fear of losing the appointment due to its scarcity. What should Hasnain do?
There are numerous prohibitions [muffatirat] while fasting during the holy month of Ramadan, including, of course, the prohibition of eating and drinking. Consuming food and drink purposely while fasting is a sin and requires the believer to not only make up theirfast, but also requires a penalty [kaffarah]. Yet, scholars, through a deduction of the Quran and hadith literature, have defined eating and drinking as food or drink consumed upon entering the esophagus. This can be done through two entry points: the mouth, and the nose (for medicinal purposes, for instance).
The Covid-19 vaccine or any other injection enters into the body through a means other than the mouth and nose. Thus, there is no restriction on receiving the Covid vaccine or any other vaccine while fasting.
Hasnain should make his appointment to get vaccinated. Due to the nature of the pandemic and the public health responsibility that every individual has, it is not only permissible, but Hasnain should not delay making his appointment and should do so as soon as possible. If Hasnain has any side effects from receiving the vaccine that require him to break his fast, he should make up the fast at a later date.
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