Covid-19 vaccines – Tell the public the truth
News of the development of safe and highly effective vaccines against Covid-19 has justifiably been greeted with excitement, but there remain serious concerns that must be addressed.
On 23 October, the Government posted notice of the award of a contract to the firm Genpact UK, to supply AI software designed to monitor adverse reactions to the Covid vaccines. It followed the posting of an advert in September in TED (Tenders Electronic Daily), the ‘’Supplement to the Official Journal of the EU (“OJ S”), dedicated to European public procurement”, that ran, ‘The MHRA urgently seeks an Artificial Intelligence (AI) software tool to process the expected high volume of Covid-19 vaccine Adverse Drug Reaction (ADRs) and ensure that no details from the ADRs’ reaction text are missed’ (emphasis added) (https://ted.europa.eu/udl?uri=TED:NOTICE:506291-2020:TEXT:EN:HTML&src=0 ).
While the Government is undoubtedly to be commended for its desire to investigate safety issues associated with the Covid-19 vaccines that represent a threat to patient life and public safety – as stated in the advert – it is alarming that, despite the confidence they have declared in the expected efficacy of forthcoming vaccines, they were apparently, as recently as September, privately expecting a high volume of adverse reactions. This surely suggests there have been indications of reactions leading to serious and severe harm, and raises several questions.
1. What information was the Government in possession of in September that made them expect a high volume of adverse drug reactions, once the vaccine was rolled out to the public?
2. What are the exact figures for adverse reactions for all the vaccines currently awaiting approval?
3. What is the range and severity of those reactions, and how many subjects have been hospitalised during the course of the trials?
We have a right to know.
We call on Government to tell the public the truth and give full disclosure of any and all adverse reactions there have so far been – and are anticipated – from administration of Covid-19 vaccines.