Soon after the vaccination process began in Norway, a report of the death of 23 people surfaced in the media according to which, these people were given the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, the above fact conformed by the Norwegian officials. Norway said that the vaccine may be hazardous for the old and critically ill patients.
“For those with the most severe frailty, even relatively mild vaccine side effects can have serious consequences,” the Norwegian Institute of Public Health stated.
“For those who have a very short remaining life span anyway, the benefit of the vaccine may be marginal or irrelevant,” they further added.
According to the Norwegian Medicines Agency, out of the 23 deaths, 13 bodies have been autopsied resulting that the common side effects that may have contributed to severe reactions in frail, elderly people.
This should not stop young and healthier people from being vaccinated. Tracking the safety of Covid vaccines, especially those relying on novel technologies such as messenger RNA would be one of the biggest challenges once shots rolled out widely, said the new head of the European Medicines Agency, Emer Cooke.
“The number of incidents so far is not alarming and in line with expectations,” Pfizer said. Pfizer also stated in an email that Pfizer and BioNTech are working along with Norwegian regulator to analyze the deaths which occurred in Norway.
Authorities have reported 21 cases of critical allergic reactions from December in the US. 14-23 after administration of about 1.9 million initial doses of the developed by Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE. That’s an incidence of 11.1 cases per million doses, as reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Norway has given about 33,000 people at least one dose, focusing on the critical and elderly patients. The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was approved last year and has been used widely with a similar shot from Moderna Inc. approved earlier this month also being administered.
A frail patient died in a care home in France two hours after being vaccinated but the authorities confirmed the death was not caused due to the vaccine after checking the patient’s previous medical history.
On Friday, the regulator’s key medicine committee said that the first Europe-wide safety report on the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine will mostly be declared by the end of January. Vaccine makers need to submit data monthly.