A publication widely relayed on social networks claims that vaccination against Covid-19 has led to more than 18,000 deaths in Europe: false information based on a misinterpretation of figures from the European Medicines Agency.
Fake news on the vaccination against Covid-19 has been particularly numerous since the announcements of July 12 concerning the extension of the health pass. One of them is a Facebook post created by the anti-vaccine group “Reaction 19” and widely relayed on social networks, which states that the vaccine has caused “more than 18,000 proven deaths” in Europe.
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“Here is a summary of the catastrophic situation of vaccinations in Europe on July 10, 2021: 18,120 deaths and 1,930,667 side effects following vaccination”, is it written on this publication, shared thousands of times and withdrawn since. And for good reason: the information affirmed by this post is false, and is based on an erroneous interpretation of a database of the European Medicines Agency, as explained by AFP Factuel.
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Misinterpretation of the numbers
Reaction 19 says it is based on “official figures” in its post, but this statement is misleading: these statistics were collected on the EMA database which lists the side effects reported after vaccination, but not necessarily due to vaccination. This database, called Eudravigilance, does specify that its content does not reflect “any confirmation of a potential link between the drug and the observed effect (s)”: it is fed by the reports of doctors and individuals to trace symptoms that appeared after an injection, but the causal link between these symptoms and the injection has not necessarily been established by the health authorities.
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It is therefore not true that such a large number of “proven deaths” and “side effects” can be attributed to the Covid-19 vaccine: these are only suspicions. Likewise, while the publication reports a significant amount of side effects, many of them are mild, such as having a fever or pain at the injection site.