U.S. health authorities have responded to the warning from Florida’s surgeon general about a spike in reports of adverse events following COVID-19 vaccination.
Drs. Rochelle Walensky and Robert Califf claimed in the response that Dr. Joseph Ladapo, the surgeon general, was misleading the public by focusing on the increase in adverse events reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS).
“The claim that the increase of VAERS reports of life-threatening conditions reported from Florida and elsewhere represents an increase of risk caused by the COVID-19 vaccines is incorrect, misleading, and could be harmful to the American public,” Walensky and Califf said in the missive.
Walensky heads the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Califf heads of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The CDC and FDA co-manage VAERS, which accepts reports from anybody but which is primarily used by healthcare workers.
The COVID-19 vaccines were given emergency authorization in late 2020. Under the emergency authorizations, vaccine companies and healthcare workers are required to report certain adverse events through VAERS, “so more reports should be expected,” Walensky and Califf said.
“Most reports do not represent adverse events caused by the vaccine and instead represent a preexisting condition that preceded vaccination or an underlying medical condition that precipitated the event,” they said.
They did not cite any studies or other research to support the claim.
While anyone can lodge reports with the system, authorities request medical records and other documentation in an effort to verify reports of certain events. Out of 1,826 reports of heart inflammation after Pfizer or Moderna vaccination in adults through May 26, 2022, for instance, the CDC verified 72 percent.
The CDC also identified hundreds of safety signals for the Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines through analyzing VAERS data in 2022, according to records obtained by The Epoch Times. A safety signal is a possible sign of a side effect. Only a handful of adverse events are definitely caused by the vaccines, according to the CDC, including myocarditis, or heart inflammation, and severe allergic shock.