The British medicines regulator has said the latest research into Covid-19 vaccines shows the jab to have a favourable safety profile, with side-effects in line with most types of vaccine, including the seasonal flu shot.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said on Friday that the latest data demonstrate both the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines are very safe, confirming the clinical trial data that supported the approvals. 

“The safety profile of the vaccines remains positive, and the benefits continue to far outweigh any known side-effects,” the MHRA said in a statement.

This reassuring data has shown that the vast majority of reported side effects are mild, and all are in line with most types of vaccine, including the seasonal flu vaccine.

The statement notes that more than 10 million doses have been administered in the UK, which has allowed the MHRA to gain a better understanding of the vaccines’ safety profile.

In data published on Friday, the MHRA said there had been 22,820 suspected side-effects, equating to a rate of 3 in 1,000 doses of vaccine administered from 9 December to 24 January 2021. 

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Syringes and an empty vial of a vaccine against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) are pictured in the Winding Wheel Theatre, Chesterfield, Britain February 3, 2021.
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To date, only jabs produced by AstraZeneca and Pfizer have been administered in the UK, with deliveries of the Moderna vaccine expected in the spring. As of Wednesday, almost 10.5 million Britons had received at least one vaccine dose.

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