The Union health ministry on Tuesday said media reports claiming admission of ‘multiple side-effects of COVID-19 vaccines’ by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) officials are ill-informed and erroneous.
Citing an RTI response, a recent news report had claimed that ICMR and CDSCO officials have admitted to side-effects of COVID-19 vaccines, citing a plethora of ramifications arising out of them.
Referring to the report the ministry said that, ‘It is clarified that the news report is ill-informed and provides erroneous information.”
In line with the policy of the Union ministry of health of proactive disclosure aligned with global scientific evidence in the public domain, the ICMR provides responses to questions under the RTI Act related to advantages and disadvantages of COVID-19 vaccines.
The ministry said in a statement, the ICMR response simply provided links of reputed websites of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the ministry of health where compiled global evidence on various COVID-19 vaccines is available.
As is the case with all other vaccines, those who get vaccinated with different COVID-19 vaccines may experience mild symptoms like injection site tenderness, pain, headache, fatigue, myalgia, malaise, pyrexia, chills, arthralgia etc.
The statement stated that rarely, few individuals may experience severe adverse events depending upon certain predisposing conditions.
Global research studies have shown that COVID-19 vaccination has helped to reduce disease severity by preventing hospitalisations and deaths caused by COVID-19, and the benefits of the vaccines far outweigh any negative effects.
In India, the NTAGI (National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation) has periodically reviewed the benefits and side-effects of Covid vaccines used in the country and has endorsed the above findings.
Additionally, the CDSCO stated as part of the RTI reply that the list of COVID-19 vaccines approved by the National Drugs Controller General is available on the website cdsco.gov.in. The CDSCO also informed that it has no other information on the subject.
Notably, the ICMR has not commented on any of the documents, links of which have been shared as part of the RTI response, the statement stated.