A Facebook post includes what appears to be a screenshot of a website listing Covid-19 vaccine side effects recorded by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) Yellow Card scheme.
Text in the post says: “A few people asked about the yellow card system/scheme yesterday … Here is [sic] the numbers in black and white…”
However, despite using figures that do appear in the Yellow Card reports, the image featured was not published by the MHRA or on a government website. It appears to be a mock-up.
Full Fact spoke to the MHRA who confirmed it was not a page from its website.
Up to 11 August 2021, the MHRA has received a total of 347,032 Yellow Card reports about Covid-19 vaccines.
The image also says “a significant proportion of these adverse events require urgent medical care, may be life changing or long lasting in effect, and represent immense human suffering and distress.”
However, the MHRA has said the majority of reported side effects “are not associated with more serious illness and likely reflect an expected, normal immune response to the vaccines”.
It is also important to note that events reported after a vaccine were not necessarily caused by the vaccine. As the MHRA explains: “The nature of Yellow Card reporting means that reported events are not always proven side effects. Some events may have happened anyway, regardless of vaccination.
“This is particularly the case when millions of people are vaccinated, and especially when most vaccines are being given to the most elderly people and people who have underlying illness.”
However, it has issued a statement on a possible link between the AstraZeneca vaccine and a very rare type of blood clot.
Following this, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation later advised that anyone under the age of 40 should be offered an alternative Covid-19 vaccine.
The MHRA is also continuing to monitor reports of other adverse reactions.
We have fact checked a number of misleading claims about the MHRA’s Yellow Card scheme before.