South Tyneside Council's public health team intercepts bogus Covid vaccination forms for school pupils
South Tyneside Council has intercepted bogus Covid vaccination forms sent to schools giving false information about the side-effects of the jabs.
It’s believed the fake forms, which authorities say have been distributed nationally, are designed to misinform families with the aim of deterring children from getting their Covid jabs.
While no specific incidents of forms reaching parents has been reported from South Tyneside schools, parents should still be vigilant about checking the reliability of information.
Sandhill View Academy in neighbouring Sunderland confirmed a bogus form had been sent to them and forwarded to parents. The form appeared to be from an NHS email account and was headed by the NHS logo.
Misinformation on the form included referring to the vaccine as still being “considered experimental” and incorrect claims about the death rate from the vaccine potentially being “ten times higher” than official figures.
A spokesman for South Tyneside Council said: “We were made aware of this issue a couple of weeks ago. Our Public Health team worked proactively with our schools and we have been able to stop this misinformation reaching parents.
“Getting the vaccine when offered is the biggest single thing people can do to keep themselves and their communities safe. We would encourage everyone to take the vaccine when offered.”
The form also referred to side-effects, some of which are not officially listed on the NHS website. Effects listed included "strokes, blindness, deafness, clotting, miscarriages, anaphylaxis and cardiovascular disorders".
A Department of Health and Social Care spokeswoman added: “Misinformation about the vaccine is dangerous and costs lives. We are continuing to do everything we can, working with Local Authorities and our NHS to counter the spread of untruths with public information that’s grounded in science and facts.”
“The phenomenal vaccine roll-out has built a wall of defence across the country, with over 123,100 lives saved and more than 230,000 hospitalisations prevented.”
Association of School and College Leaders representative, Julie McCulloch, said: "We would appeal for those behind these fake consent forms to stop circulating them.”
Any parents who are concerned about the reliability of vaccination information should check the NHS website.