I have been meaning to write about this since Neil Oliver of GB News covered it, and I have tweeted about it several times. But Yaffa Shir-Raz wrote a comprehensive article about it in English on her website, then Etana Hecht covered it in her excellent Substack post, so I figured it was well and covered, and I’m super busy working on something very important. But following a recent twitter thread by Yaffa and Steve Kirsch’s post about it, I was asked by someone to put the key pieces of information down ‘on paper’ as I understand them, so I did. Here they are.
Summary of key points
- On August 2nd, the Israeli Ministry of Health (MOH) released a report on adverse events reported following vaccination from December 9th 2021-May 31st 2022 based on a new reporting system. The MOH tasked a team of medical researchers from Shamir Medical Center with experience in pharmacovigilance to analyse the data from the system. Here is a subtitled video with excerpts from the Zoom meeting on this issue.
- The Israeli MOH subsequently misrepresented the findings stating that no new adverse events were found, there was no new signal, and the events were not necessarily caused by the vaccine, even though the researchers themselves said the exact opposite.
- The Israeli MOH artificially minimised the extent of reporting by comparing the number of reports submitted during that period to a much larger number of vaccine doses administered over a longer period of time and a much larger population than the one reporting.
- The Israeli MOH sat on these results for nearly two months and did not disclose them to the expert committee that met in late June to decide on recommending the vaccine for children under five.
The MOH tasked a team of medical researchers, headed by pediatric specialist Professor Mati Berkowitz, head of Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology unit at Shamir Medical Center, to analyse the data from a new adverse event reporting system they instituted to coincide with the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines in children age 5-11. They presented their results to MOH officials in early June; the official report was released to the public on August 2nd.
The official report states that the system was put into place (nearly a year after the start of the vaccine campaign) because the previous patient reporting system could not be validated and was not suitable for analysis. There was another system in place for doctors to report side effects, but the report said the new system was designed to discover side-effects that were not reported to doctors. (Of course, it does not mention the fact that most doctors would not submit reports if they felt the adverse event was unrelated to the vaccine or because they did not want to make waves.) In short, the MOH admitted that for nearly a year Israel did not have a functioning adverse event reporting system akin to VAERS, despite having publicly claimed otherwise. (During the meeting, the woman in charge of the previous system says she has received thousands of reports and doesn’t know what to do with them.)
The Lies and Manipulations of the MOH
The official report claimed there were no new types of adverse events reported that had not been reported previously and no new signals. It said there were very small numbers of reports compared to the very large number of vaccine doses, and it also noted that the reports did not necessarily indicate causality.
However, a recorded Zoom meeting where the researchers presented their results to senior people at the MOH was leaked, showing that the report hid important facts and manipulated the results. The MOH also did not disclose the researchers’ results to the expert committee that decided on whether to recommend the Covid vaccine for 6-months-4-year-olds.
In their presentation, the researchers made the following points:
- Some of the side-effects reported were of types that had not appeared in any previous reports from the MOH and were not to be found in the published literature on adverse events following COVID-19 vaccination (which now includes over 2,500 papers). They suggested writing a paper about their findings.
- They said many of the adverse events (including neurological and menstrual) lasted for months or were still ongoing a year after vaccination, something that the MOH had not seen before and was also unknown to Pfizer (according to an earlier meeting Prof. Berkowitz had attended with Pfizer representatives, who said they did not know of long-lasting side effects). Although the official report does include the data on long-lasting adverse events, the summary claims there is nothing new in the findings.
- The researchers said that some of the reports indicated that the reported adverse events went away and then reappeared after subsequent doses. They refer to this as “re-challenge” and note that according the Naranjo criteria for assessing adverse events, this means that the vaccines did cause at least the events where people reported the re-challenge effect. The official report does not mention any of this. It only states the reports are not necessarily related to the vaccine.
- The researchers were very concerned about what they were seeing and it weighed heavily on their consciences.
- The researchers said they only got cooperation from one health maintenance organisation (HMO) to share the data it received from the new reporting system. (Israel’s health system is divided into five different HMO-type organisations; each Israeli is required to sign up with one of the HMOs.) None of the other four HMOs shared their data, including Israel’s two largest ones, and the head of the research team said that they are keeping the data “close to their chests”, mentioning Ran Balicer by name. He said the MOH needs to insist that they cooperate (after all, the ministry did hire him to do research on a system it initiated, so why wouldn’t it?). The only one that did share the data (Meuhedet) is very small, representing only about 15% of the Israeli population with a heavy religious population who have lower vaccination rates than the general population.
When the official report came out, it compared the number of reports to the total number of vaccines given out since the beginning of the vaccination campaign. It did not mention that the adverse event reports came only from this small HMO. Furthermore, only people receiving vaccination after December 9th 2021 were likely to report to the system (though others could and did). But only about 10% of all vaccines given out in Israel were given out during the period of the study. Finally, when it reported on the menstrual adverse events, it compared them to the number of vaccines given to both women and men. All of these manipulations made the rate of reported events appear much smaller. And if all of this wasn’t enough, reports of events that resulted in or involved hospitalisation were not part of the analyses, as those were dealt with by a different team.
The researchers can also be heard in the meeting asking to get a meeting or have the results conveyed to Dr. Sharon Alroy-Preis, Head of Public Health Services at the Ministry of Health.
And as if all this wasn’t damning enough, Prof. Berkowitz says, in reference to the long-lasting side effects:
Here we will need to think about this medico-legally. Why? Because for not a few side-effects, we said “OK, it exists and there’s a report, but please get vaccinated”. So we need to think about how to write it and present it in the correct way, so they won’t come afterwards with lawsuits: “Wait a second, you said it would go away and it’s OK to get vaccinated, now look what happened to me.”
Not a single mainstream news outlet in Israel has picked up on this story, and the MOH has not made any statements. Only GB News in the U.K. and Yaffa Shir-Raz’s online Real Time Magazine have covered the story.
‘What is more concerning is the response of the Ministry of Health’
Prof Retsef Levi discusses the possible side effects of the Pfizer Covid vaccine, and the political response in Israel to questions about them. pic.twitter.com/BFTn5deBNp— GB News (@GBNEWS) August 20, 2022
- Four-minute video exposing the MoH report, which includes statements showing that in 65% of the neurological cases the problems didn’t resolve.
- Two-minute clip showing Dr. Sharon Alroy-Preis assuring the public the vaccines are safe for women juxtaposed with the video of the researchers saying the vaccines are causing damage to women’s reproductive organs that in some cases doesn’t end. They also point out that re-challenge results in the same problem coming back which is evidence of causality, especially when it happens in many patients.