What are we not being told?

News of the development of safe and highly effective vaccines against Covid-19 is to be welcomed.  There do, however, remain concerns, that need to be addressed for the public to feel confidence.
 
 In a quiet posting on 23 October, the Government included 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.  What’s wrong with that, you may well ask?  It’s very sensible.  The UK is simply taking proper safety precautions to keep us all safe!  In September, however – and this is the crunch part – the advert asking for tenders stated, ‘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).  The advert was placed in TED (Tenders Electronic Daily), the ‘’Supplement to the Official Journal of the EU (“OJ S”), dedicated to European public procurement” (https://ted.europa.eu/udl?uri=TED:NOTICE:506291-2020:TEXT:EN:HTML&src=0 ).

As said, it is commendable that the Government is taking steps to investigate the safety of potential vaccines, and we welcome the statement that there were no reports of hospitalised or severe cases in anyone who received the Oxford Vaccine (https://www.ox.ac.uk/news/2020-11-23-oxford-university-breakthrough-global-covid-19-vaccine).   But this raises importantl questions in respect of the other vaccines.

  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, prior to roll-out?
  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.  
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