Side effects of COVID-19 vaccines in Switzerland – update

Bern, 04.06.2021 - Up to 2 June 2021, Swissmedic evaluated 2,701 reports on suspected adverse drug reactions (ADR) to COVID-19 vaccinations in Switzerland. The majority of the reports involved more than one reaction (a total of 7,065 reactions in the 2,701 reports, equating to an average of 2.6 reactions per report). At 1,751 (64,8 %), most of the reports were classified as not serious, while 950 (35,2 %) reports were classified as serious.

Most of the reports were submitted by medical professionals, while a relatively large number (413, or 15,3 %) came directly from those affected, i.e. the patients.

The average age of those affected was 63.8 years (range 16–101), with 33% aged 75 or over. In the cases classified as serious, the average age was 66.5 years, and for reports temporally linked to a death it was 83.6 years.

The majority of the reports concerned women and there were a few cases where no gender was specified. 1'120 (41,5 %) reports involve Pfizer/BioNTech’s Comirnaty®, while 1'538 (56,9 %) are associated with Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine. In 43 (1,6 %) cases, the vaccine was not specified.

The reports corroborate the side effects profile identified during the authorisation studies and described in the medicinal product information, and do not alter the positive ratio of benefits to risks of the two mRNA vaccines used.

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