Will the COVID-19 Vaccine be covered under the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program?
The COVID-19 Virus has spread to all 50 states. As of March 19, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported more than 10,442 cases and 150 deaths in the United States. Facing the threat of a quick-spreading virus, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) quickly developed a possible vaccine in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
What do we know about the COVID-19 vaccine?
The National Institute of Health has begun clinical trials on an investigational vaccine for the COVID-19 virus called mRNA-1273. The trial began on March 16th with a volunteer at the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle, one of the areas most affected by the virus. The trial is scheduled to last six weeks and consists of 45 adult volunteers aged 18 to 55 years old.
Phase 1 of the trial is to evaluate the investigational vaccine’s ability to induce an immune response in participants and to determine the appropriate safe dosage. Study participants receive two doses of the vaccine via intramuscular injection in the upper arm approximately four weeks apart. The first volunteers are given low doses and monitored. The doses will increase with each group of participants over the course of the investigation as more safety data is analyzed. These participants will be monitored over the course of a year for any side effects or other symptoms.
What happens if someone is injured by the Coronavirus vaccine?
If and when a COVID-19 vaccine is safely developed and available for the public, it will be in high demand. Adults and children across the U.S. will be lining up to get vaccinated.
What happens if someone suffers an injury or side effect due to the COVID vaccine? Is it covered under the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program? Are those who are injured entitled to compensation?
The Federal Government has already indicated that yes, the COVID-19 vaccine will be covered under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. And yes, if a connection between an injury and the vaccination is proven by “compelling, reliable, valid, medical and scientific evidence,” the injured person will be entitled to compensation.
This is good news. First, it’s encouraging to see how quickly the government has worked to put together trials for a potential vaccine. Second, if and when it is available, I hope that everyone has access to it so that we can prevent the further spread of the virus.
However, as an attorney that represents people who have suffered injuries from vaccines, I know that this vaccine will, as with other vaccines, produce some rare instances of side effects. It is good to see the government be proactive about the potential harm this vaccine will cause.
Our vaccine injuries lawyers are here for you
We will be closely monitoring the development of the vaccine and any further amendments or changes coming out of the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program and Vaccine Injury Table. We will be prepared to represent individuals who experience side effects as a direct result of any covered vaccine, including a COVID vaccine if and when that is available and identified in the Vaccine Injury Table.
If you believe you have been injured or experienced a side effect as a result of a vaccination, please contact us. You may be entitled to compensation. We offer a free consultation and case review.