Arnold Bosman, M.D., director of Transmissible BV-Public health Learning Solutions, is a co-author of a research paper confirming the overall safety of the two mRNA and the single adenovirus vector COVID-19 vaccines in the United States.
In an observational study published in Frontiers in Public Health last month, the research team, which included collaborators from the United Kingdom, Germany, India and the Netherlands, found that over a one-year period there were very low overall cumulative reported rates of severe adverse events from three COVID-19 vaccines compared to adverse events from actually having COVID-19. The findings were based on data from a publicly accessible vaccine safety surveillance database and included all instances up to 28 days after vaccination.
The study team found 88,626 severe adverse events after immunization (sAEFI) reported out of 485 million vaccine doses administered nationwide over a one-year period.
In the study, researchers looked at the rates of sAEFI reported to the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) between December 13, 2020, and December 13, 2021, for each of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccines authorized for emergency use and attributed to the SARS-CoV-2 vaccination programs across all states and territories in the United States. Severe adverse events included emergency department visits, hospitalizations, life-threatening events and deaths.
Given the low rates of severe adverse events with the three COVID-19 vaccines, the study concluded that immunization should remain a critical tool for controlling SARS-CoV-2 in the United States. Researchers also noted that data confirming the safety of the vaccines should be the centerpiece of public health messaging to help fuel vaccine uptake and combat vaccine hesitancy. Finally, the study team wrote that the findings should bolster confidence in adenovector virus vaccines and their continued use globally, including some remote areas where refrigeration is difficult or impossible.
“This study is an important contribution to the body of evidence around the safety of COVID-19 vaccines”, so says Arnold Bosman.