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Sir Chris Chope criticised by UK Statistics Authority chairman Sian Jones over his claim 10,000 people had been affected by Covid-19 jabs

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CHRISTCHURCH MP Sir Chris Chope received a slap on the wrist from statistics officials who said there was “no basis” for his claim that over 10,000 people had reacted badly to Covid jabs.

Sian Jones, chair of the UK Statistics Authority, wrote to Sir Chris over comments he made during a House of Commons debate which caused a Labour MP to complain.

Ms Jones said: “There is no basis in the official statistics on the Covid-19 vaccine programme to support the claim that vaccines have caused such a high number of severe adverse reactions or deaths.

Sir Christopher Chope in the House of Commons (picture: Parliament.tv)
Sir Christopher Chope in the House of Commons (picture: Parliament.tv)

“The available evidence suggests that severe side effects are very rare, and indeed much rarer than serious complications from Covid-19 itself.”

The authority told the A&T it requested Sir Chris for the source of his information, but had not had a response.

His comments were made last September during a debate on the Covid-19 Vaccine Damage Bill, which sets out how the government should compensate for vaccine harm.

Sir Chris referenced “hapless families – 10,000 of them, or maybe more” who had “suffered real, serious damage as a result of doing the right thing”.

But in her letter, Ms Jones said only 27 deaths between March 2020 and March 2022 were from “vaccines causing adverse effects”, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

There was also a further six where this cause was mentioned, she added.

Nearly 150 million Covid vaccinations have been given in the UK
Nearly 150 million Covid vaccinations have been given in the UK

Sir Chris also referenced the Yellow Card scheme in which people can report potential vaccine side-effects.

He said over a period of almost a year there were 435 reports of major blood clots and low platelet counts, including 74 deaths, and 1,632 of deaths shortly after vaccination.

However, the government pointed out reported events were not proven side-effects, particularly with millions being vaccinated, including people who are elderly and with an underlying illness.

In her letter, Ms Jones also noted the scheme was “not an estimate of the prevalence of vaccine side-effects”, as made clear by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency.

Speaking to the A&T, Sir Chris could not identify the source of the figure of 10,000 bad reactions to the Covid jab, but said “politics” was getting in the way of highlighting an issue that made up a big part of his mail bag.

He said the ONS was giving less priority to those self-reporting harm from vaccines compared to people self-reporting long Covid.

Sir Chris is not the only MP to have got in trouble with Covid numbers. As reported in the A&T, New Forest West MP Sir Desmond Swayne retracted his incorrect claim in the Commons last year that deaths from road accidents were outpacing those caused by Covid.

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