Deaths after COVID-19 Vaccination in Canada (and British Columbia). How much should we be worried?

Updated: Mar 31, 2021

PART I.

Reza Afshari, MD, MPH, PhD, Toxicologist- Epidemiologist, Info@BCtoxicology.com

--- Email the author to request more information on this article. 2021-03-30.


BACKGROUND


As vaccine coverage gradually increases in Canada and British Columbia, side effects or occasional death are reported in the days following vaccination, leading to vaccine reluctance. --- How should we interpret post-vaccination deaths or address the concerns of the public? In the first part of this article, we identify the fatal hazards after vaccination to characterize the risk attributed to vaccination.



Current data suggests minimal, if not negligible, safety concerns regarding vaccination. Post-vaccine deaths occur for a variety of reasons, not because of vaccination. Figure 1 shows the different reasons for death following vaccination.


WHAT ARE THE CAUSES OF POST-VACCINATION DEATHS?


1. “NORMAL” DEATHS: --- ROUGHLY SPEAKING:

Deaths after vaccination are mainly linked to other reasons or so-called “normal” deaths. --- In Canada, 285,000 people die each year (38,000 in British Columbia) for many reasons. --- This figure is mathematically equivalent to 11,000 deaths within “two weeks after vaccination” if the entire population (children and adults) is vaccinated (1,500 in British Columbia).


2. COVID-19 DEATHS AFTER VACCINATION


2.1. TIME TO DEVELOP IMMUNITY AFTER VCCINATION


More importantly, post-vaccination deaths can occur from COVID-19 in the weeks following vaccination, as immunity from the vaccine takes time to develop (this case would be a vaccinated case who dies from COVID-19.) --- ROUGHLY SPEAKING:


The additional deaths attributable to COVID19 over the past [one] year have been significant and have resulted in approximately 20,000 deaths in Canada (1,400 in British Columbia). --- This figure is mathematically equivalent to 770 deaths within “two weeks after vaccination” if the entire population (children and adults) is vaccinated (54 in British Columbia).


[--- Additional deaths from COVID-19 equal 7% of all deaths; however, more time and data are needed to see if COVID-19-related deaths are in addition to other causes of death or overlap to some extent.]


2.2. VACCINE IS NOT 100% EFFECTIVE

Also, the vaccine is not 100% effective, and it is possible that a case will die after vaccination against COVID-19 in the next few months or years, for example, a case of an immune-compromised patient.


2.3. COVID-19 SECONDARY (DELAYED) DEATHS


Death from COVID-19 could be secondary, as a growing body of evidence suggests that the complication of infection can compromise various organs or systems and lead to side effects or deaths at later stages, which are recognized as post-COVID-19 syndromes.


3. DATA PROBLEMS:


In the process of documenting deaths, including those related to COVID-19, missing cases may arise, for example, due to data collection issues, which is a rational concern. They include:


3.1. UNDER DIAGNOSIS, what if a mild case of COVID-19 dies, undiagnosed and attributed to other causes such as cancer or old age?

3.2. DATA MISSING, what if a suspected case, for whatever reason, is not tested or avoids being tested? or if the test results are reported as "false negatives"?

3.3. MISSING ADDRESSES, What happens if a positive COVID-19 case is not included in the statistics, due to different data collection regulations, logistics issues, or human error?


4. CONSPIRACY THEORY


Finally, a conspiracy theorist can invent a death (lie), highlight logistical failures in the documentation, and most importantly, present any side effects or deaths unrelated to vaccination to substantiate their claim that the whole process is a "hoax".



HOW TO DEAL WITH THIS PROBLEM?


First, we must emphasize that symptomatic cases are tested and diagnosed. Additionally, health authorities actively monitor and track COVID-19 cases and rigorously investigate side effects and suspicious deaths, especially taking a much more rigorous approach after vaccination. Also, death certificates and post-mortem examinations/tests clarify the diagnosis. --- Any concern about the intent and scope of the work of health authorities is a hoax!


Second, we must address the real concerns about reported side effects and deaths after vaccination thoroughly and transparently to reassure the public. --- Suppose the public health authorities fail in their mission to clarify the matter scientifically. In this case, conspiracy theorists take advantage of non-vaccine-related deaths for the wrong reason and exponentially amplify the possibilities of tipping the public in the wrong direction. --- Communication, including press releases and knowledge translation documents, are of the utmost importance.


To my knowledge, this article (Parts I, II and III) is the first attempt to quantitatively address the pattern of post-vaccination fatal side effects and public concerns through a scientific risk assessment process to characterize risks and concerns in Canada.


In Part II and III, details on the death and public outrage models and risk management strategies will be presented.


How to cite this article? Afshari R. Deaths after COVID-19 Vaccination in Canada and British Columbia. How much should we be worried about? BCTOX 2021 01(e1) Part 1, 6.

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