KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 20 — A total of 896 of 24,286 reports received on adverse events following immunisation (AEFI) cases up to January 15 is related to Covid-19 booster shots, Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said.

He said of the 896 cases, 42 involved severe side effects while the rest experienced minimum side effects.

“If we are to look at the reported numbers, 0.4 for every 1,000 doses given, booster doses were 0.1 for every 1,000 doses given while severe side effects was at 0.05 for every 1,000 doses given,” he told a press conference in Parliament here today.

Also present were Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin and Deputy Health Minister Datuk Dr Noor Azmi Ghazali.

Meanwhile, Dr Noor Hisham said 9.2 million booster shots have been administered up to January 15.

On reports of myocarditis in children, he said only one to three cases per 100,000 children were affected by myocarditis as a result of vaccination, but added that the rate could be 36 times higher if they were not vaccinated.

On AEFI cases involving Kajang Prison inmates, Dr Noor Hisham said 13 of the 18 reports received had been investigated and presented at the Covid-19 Vaccine Special Pharmacovigilance Committee (JFK) meeting on Jan 12.

“Five more reports, including those involving deaths, are still under investigation ... and as a result of JFK’s assessment based on the investigation report received, 10 of the cases were not due to the vaccine received by the prisoners.

“As for three more reports, adverse effects were only a possibility due to the vaccine,” he said.

Meanwhile, Khairy said each AEFI report went through a detailed process to enable the Ministry of Health (MOH) to conduct investigations including post-mortems and clinical views before confirming whether the case was due to vaccines or otherwise.

Asked about the public’s concern over booster shots which have been linked to several deaths which had gone viral on social media, Khairy said the MOH will be releasing all AEFI data related to booster doses.

While saying that most of the viral news had nothing to do with vaccination, he said the MOH would conduct thorough investigations, especially cases involving deaths. — Bernama