MOH Says Benefits Of mRNA Covid-19 Outweigh Risks After Letter & Petitions
On Saturday (26 Jun), a group of 5 doctors wrote an urgent open letter following the death of a boy in the United States days after he received a Covid-19 vaccine.
The doctors, one of whom is a cardiologist, requested an urgent halt to vaccinating young males. There’s also a petition started by concerned parents requesting the same.
The Ministry of Health (MOH) responded on Sunday (27 Jun) that it’ll continue offering mRNA vaccines as the benefits outweigh the risks.
MOH replies to open letter calling for halt of vaccines to young students
In MOH’s response dated Sunday (27 Jun), it said the vaccination expert committee is aware of the open letter signed by Dr Kho Kwang Po and 4 other doctors.
It noted the post mentioned the death of a 13-year-old boy in the US from heart failure despite no cause of death being made public.
The case is under investigation by US authorities.
The expert committee is monitoring both local and international data and on 11 Jun noted a very small risk of both myocarditis (heart inflammation) and pericarditis (heart tissue swelling) after the vaccine’s 2nd dose.
They stand by this assessment following their review and that benefits outweigh the risks.
The data on both heart inflammation and heart tissue swelling hasn’t changed since 11 Jun, they also noted.
MOH continues to recommend mRNA vaccines
With regard to US data, cases of heart inflammation are rare, the expert committee said.
The US FDA has added a warning of rare cases of such.
Professional medical associations in the US continue to encourage vaccination for everyone above the age of 12 as the risk is small.
Meanwhile, the expert committee continues to recommend mRNA vaccines for young men.
As a precaution, however, they advise that young men avoid strenuous physical activity for a week after their 2nd dose.
If anyone develops chest pain, breath shortness or abnormal heartbeats, they should seek medical attention as soon as possible.
Benefits outweigh risks
The vaccine is not compulsory to take. Regardless, authorities strongly encourage everyone to get it if able.
A clinical trial by Pfizer has shown that the vaccine is well-accepted by adolescents 12 and up.
In Singapore, there are 6 cases of heart inflammation and all of them recovered.
This is likely why authorities continue to recommend the vaccine to those 12 and up.
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