The SciCheck Digest
COVID-19 vaccines have been the subject of peer-reviewed studies that have found them to be effective and safe, but a meme surrounds social media falsely claiming that no such studies have been done. .
Clinical trials for the three COVID-19 vaccines available in the United States involved thousands of participants and each was discussed in the studies reviewed.
But a meme circulating on social media spread the false claim that said the opposite.
Accompanying the meme is its title: “Things are NOT offered to take the Covid jab.” Afterwards it is listed: “Peer reviewed clinical studies confirming its safety and effectiveness” and “Responsibility in case of error.”
It’s easy to show the first claim to be incorrect. The New England Journal of Medicine – a peer -reviewed publication – has published studies that have found that vaccines from Moderna, Pfizer / BioNTech and Johnson & Johnson are effective and safe. NEJM is the oldest continuously published general medical journal in the world and one of the most frequently cited journals.
It is also worth noting that more than 290 million vaccines have been given nationwide to date with rare documented cases of serious adverse reactions, including anaphylaxis occurring in approximately 2 to 5. patients per million.
There were also 32 cases of a rare and dangerous blood purification condition (mainly in women under 50) among the 10 million people who received the J&J vaccine. The CDC said its review of the cases “did not establish a causal link,” but “recent reports indicate that there is a credible causal relationship between the J & J / Janssen COVID- Vaccine. 19 and a rare and serious adverse event – a drop in blood with a small platelet count – that resulted in death. ”There were three deaths linked to the condition as of May 7, according to the CDC.
(See SciCheck articles on each vaccine: “A COVID-19 Vaccine Guide by Moderna,” “A COVID-19 Vaccine Guide by Pfizer / BioNTech” and “A COVID-19 Vaccine Guide by COVID-19 of Johnson & Johnson. “)
As for the second part of the claim, it is true that the companies that make the vaccines are especially protected from duty. But that doesn’t mean there is no refuge for people who, on rare occasions, can be hurt.
The Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act of 2005, or PREP Act, provides liability protection for companies involved in manufacturing drugs or other products that help respond to a pandemic. That covers COVID-19 vaccines.
A recent report by the Congressional Research Service explained, “Under the PREP Act, Congress made the ruling that, in the context of a public health emergency, certain people should be vaccinated. and entities out of responsibility to ensure that life-saving adversaries can be efficiently developed, deployed, and served. ”
The protection of liability is broad, as we have explained before, even if it is not until death or a serious bodily injury as a result of intentional misconduct.
And, more importantly, there is a system called the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program, or CICP, that pays for those administered to vaccines, including those for COVID-19, and other products.
CICP provides benefits to individuals, or homeland individuals, “sustaining a covered serious injury as a direct result of the administration or use of vaccines,” including vaccines in COVID-19, courtesy of the program website.
Health Resources & Services Administration spokesman David Bowman told us previously that people have a year to submit a claim, which is checked by medical staff to determine if the individual has experienced an injury. injury. The decision, he said, was based on “compelling, reliable, valid, medical and scientific evidence.”
Since its inception in 2010, Bowman said, CICP has paid a total of $ 5.7 million for 39 claims.
Most other vaccines – those not related to the pandemic – are covered by the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, or VICP, with funding available to those who may be suffering from common vaccine -related injuries.
The VICP was created after lawsuits against vaccine makers and healthcare providers in the 1980s that threatened to cause vaccine shortages and reduce vaccination rates, according to HRSA, which oversees the program. It began accepting petitions for compensation in 1988 and, since then, has received more than 24,084. Of those, “19,784 petitions were settled, with 8,028 of those determined to be paid, while 11,756 were dismissed. The total fee paid over the life of the program is approximately $ 4.5 billion,” according to one recent HRSA report.
From 2006 to 2019, more than 4 billion doses of covered vaccines were administered and 5,755 people were paid, meaning an estimated one person was paid for every 1 million vaccinations, according to the report.
“The fee provided for a petition does not necessarily imply that the vaccine caused the said harm,” the report added. “Actually, [a]nearly 60 percent of all compensation provided by the VICP comes as a result of a negotiated settlement between the parties in which HHS did not conclude, consistent with the review of evidence, that the alleged vaccines caused the alleged harm.
The SciCheck COVID-19 / Vaccination Project was made possible through a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The foundation has no control over our editorial decisions, and the views expressed in our articles do not necessarily reflect the views of the foundation. The purpose of the project is to increase the disclosure of accurate information about COVID-19 and vaccines, while reducing the impact of misinformation.