Senator Concerned About Adverse Vaccine Reactions Sends Letters To Moderna, Pfizer CEOs

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Dylan Housman Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent
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Republican Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson has sent a letter to the CEOs of pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Moderna to inquire about adverse reactions to their COVID-19 vaccines.

Johnson held a press conference June 28 which featured five individuals who have suffered severe illness after getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Johnson has stressed that he is pro-vaccine but wants Pfizer and Moderna to list the adverse reactions that have occurred after their shots and provide more detail about how frequent and severe side effects are, according to Fox News.

“I do want to be clear at the outset, to a person, we are all pro-vaccine. Personally, I’ve had every flu shot since at least the swine flu. I’m current in all of my other vaccines,” Johnson said in a statement. “I was a huge supporter of Operation Warp Speed. I’m happy to acknowledge that over 300 million doses of the vaccine have been given to the U.S., and for most people, the vast majority of people, the vaccine has been administered with little or no side effects.”

But Johnson alleges that in rare cases where side effects are experienced, victims aren’t being heard or taken seriously. People “are having a hard time getting their truths communicated without being vilified, without being ridiculed, without being censored,” Johnson said.

Pfizer and Moderna’s FDA emergency use authorization memos both listed various adverse reactions that could result from vaccination, including nervous system disorders, vascular disorders and musculoskeletal and connective tissue disorders.

American health officials have monitored “mild” reports of myocarditis and paused the administration of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine in April. On the whole, serious side effects brought on by COVID-19 vaccines in the U.S. have been exceedingly rare in the nearly 182 million people who have been fully or partially vaccinated.

The vaccines have proven to be nearly 100% effective at preventing serious illness or death from COVID-19, but as a majority of adults have become vaccinated in the U.S., the debate has shifted to the efficacy and necessity of children being vaccinated.

One case highlighted at Johnson’s press conference was that of Maddie De Garay, who became seriously ill after getting her second COVID-19 shot in a clinical trial. (RELATED: Lockdown Enthusiasts Are All Over The Delta Variant. How Serious Is This Strain?)

The FDA has authorized the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use in children aged 12 and older. Moderna’s vaccine has not yet been authorized for that age group, although the company says its shots are safe and effective for it as well.

The CDC recommends that children aged 12 and up get vaccinated against COVID-19. However, the World Health Organization recommends that children do not get vaccinated until more information is available.