When I read the alarming figures relating to COVID-19 adverse reactions, deaths and permanent disabilities that recently appeared in a Public Forum letter, I decided to do some fact-checking.

Reliable information is so important to the well-being of us all. The non-partisan VAERS, or Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, (www.vaers.gov) shows the following:

More than 442,000,000 doses were administered since Dec. 14, 2020, through Nov. 15, 2021.

“A review of available clinical information, including death certificates, autopsy, and medical records has not established a causal link to COVID-19 vaccines. However, recent reports indicate a plausible causal relationship between the J&J/Jansen COVID-19 vaccine and TTS, a rare and serious adverse event that causes blood clots … which has caused 5 deaths,” according to the VAERS website.

Five deaths is a far cry from the 18,000 deaths reported in the recent Public Forum letter.

Adverse effects to the vaccines have been negligible compared with the long-term effects of COVID-19 cases. Perhaps, I should say, serious adverse effects, because many people (like me) had a bit of a sore arm and experienced some tiredness the next day after — no worse than a flu shot.

For those who would say, “Oh, that’s the government talking. You can’t rely on them,” well, there’s a whole bunch of us retirees who rely on the Social Security and military retirement checks each and every month and the government does a pretty good job of being reliable about that.

Ed Newman

Rocky Mount