A government commission looking into the adverse effects of the COVID-19 vaccine has verified the first fatality from anaphylaxis after receiving the vaccine on Tuesday. A 68-year-old man died of anaphylaxis (severe allergic response) after getting vaccinated on March 8, according to a report submitted by the national Adverse Events Following Immunization (AEFI) Committee. According to the study, the fatality was caused by a “vaccine product related response.” Covishield had been taken by the deceased.
The panel conducted a causality evaluation of 31 reported adverse effects following immunisation (AEFI) instances.
“It is the first fatality connected to COVID-19 immunisation owing to anaphylaxis,” N.K. Arora, adviser, National AEFI committee, said. However, when compared to the overall statistics, only a tiny percentage of people experienced a serious response. Most anaphylactic responses occur within this time, and quick treatment avoids deaths.” Those receiving vaccinations should wait 30 minutes at the inoculation centre following immunisation.
“This event should not generate dread in the minds of people, and there should be no worry about the safety of the vaccinations licenced for the Indian population,” V.K. Paul, member, NITI Aayog, stated in response to the news. When it comes to public health choices, we weigh the advantages and dangers, and in this situation, the risk is negligible compared to the advantages.”
Meanwhile, the report stated that 18 of the 31 cases evaluated had an inconsistent causal association to vaccination (coincidental – not linked to vaccination), 7 were classified as indeterminate, 3 cases were found to be vaccine product related, one was an anxiety-related reaction, and two cases were unclassifiable. It went on to say that just reporting fatalities and hospitalizations as significant adverse events does not mean they were caused by vaccinations.
According to the study, following comprehensive study and debate, the results of the causality assessment of 31 instances approved by the national AEFI Committee on February 5 (five instances), March 9 (eight instances), and March 31 (18 instances) have been disclosed.
“Only carefully conducted investigations and causality assessments can help in understanding if there is any causative link between the incident and the vaccine,” the study stated, adding that death cases had been given priority in causality assessments.
According to the panel, the advantages of vaccination outweigh the tiny chance of damage, and any new signs of damage are continually watched and assessed on a regular basis as a precaution.
According to the Health Ministry, the number of fatalities recorded in the country as a result of COVID-19 immunisation is just 0.0002 percent of the 23.5 crore doses delivered, which is within the predicted death rates in a population. It’s also worth noting that people who test positive for COVID-19 illness have a mortality rate of more than 1%, and COVID-19 immunisation can prevent these fatalities.
As a result, the risk of death from immunisation is minimal when compared to the known risk of death from COVID-19 illness, according to the study.
According to the Ministry of Health, an adverse event following vaccination is defined as “any undesirable medical incident that does not necessarily have a causal link with the use of the vaccine.”
“Any unfavourable or unexpected sign, aberrant test finding, symptom, or disease” is an example. “Healthcare professionals, doctors, and vaccine recipients have always been urged to report all fatalities, hospitalizations, and events resulting in disability, as well as any mild and adverse reactions following immunisation at any time after vaccination,” stated the statement.
COVID vaccinations should not cause dread or concern, according to Charu Goyal Sachdeva, HOD, Internal Medicine, HCMCT Manipal Hospitals. “Vaccination is recommended even for those who have experienced COVID-19 infection. Following COVID, vaccination should be done within the government-mandated window time. The efficacy of antibodies generated by a natural infection differs from person to person in terms of reliability and durability. According to studies, 9% of people may not have detectable antibodies after a natural infection, and 7% of people may not have T-cells in their systems to recognise the virus.”
She went on to say that a vaccination would be a more dependable, long-lasting, and protective source of protection. “As a result, it is recommended that they take the injection. Apart from that, there is a lot of worry regarding variations, such as how effective the infection’s natural defence is against the variation and how much it can protect us against new strains. As a result, the vaccination provides dependable protection since it elicits a strong response,” she noted.
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