The U.S. government approved its first three payments to people injured by COVID-19 vaccines — amounting to a total of $4,634.89.
The Health and Resources Service Administration (HRSA) vaccine injury claims report, updated monthly, shows one $2,019.55 payment for anaphylaxis and two payments — $1,582.65 and $1032.69 — for myocarditis.
The payments were made through HRSA’s Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP).
The CICP was established under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act, which protects pharmaceutical companies from liability for injuries sustained from “countermeasures,” such as vaccines and medications, administered during a public health emergency.
Since 2010, when it approved its first claim, the program has compensated a total of 33 claims for vaccine injuries — but these are the first awards for COVID-19 vaccines.
“These long-awaited awards were overdue, highly anticipated and speculated upon,” said Kim Mack Rosenberg, acting general counsel for Children’s Health Defense (CHD). “What is remarkable is that less than $5,000 was paid — total. This is a tragedy that highlights the severe limitations of the program.”
CHD Acting President Laura Bono called the payouts for myocarditis “insulting,” given that mortality rates increase to 50% within five years of diagnosis.
“The CICP is a pathetic, government-run program that gives complete liability protection to the very industries profiting from the COVID vaccine or product. While victims linger with their injuries, paying out-of-pocket for expenses, or at worst die, the industries run to the bank.”
Since the start of the pandemic, people claiming injuries related to COVID-19 vaccines and other countermeasures submitted 11,425 requests for compensation.
Of those, only 19 have been declared eligible for compensation and are undergoing a “medical benefits review” to determine payment.
The anaphylaxis case had been pending medical benefits review since the fall of 2021, and the two myocarditis cases had been pending review since January.
During the medical benefits review, HRSA determines any costs remaining after insurance, workers’ comp, disability or other reimbursements or payments.
Wayne Rohde, an expert in vaccine injury compensation, wrote on his Substack that given the “18+ months to review previous medical benefits that may have been awarded to the injured party [the anaphylaxis case], this process tells me it was a major injury that resulted in very large medical bills.”
Myocarditis is a serious condition that also requires a lot of medical attention, Rohde said.
To date, there have been 1,541,275 reports of adverse events following COVID-19 vaccination submitted to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS).
How does vaccine injury compensation work? the VICP and CICP
HRSA, which operates under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), administers two vaccine injury compensation programs: the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) and the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP).
The VICP is a special, no-fault tribunal housed within the U.S. Court of Federal Claims that handles injury claims for 16 common vaccines on the childhood vaccination schedule. To date, it has awarded more than $4 billion for medical bills, lost wages, lawyer fees, and pain and suffering to thousands of people for vaccine injuries.
The program does not currently cover COVID-19 vaccine injuries. Should COVID-19 vaccines be moved into the program, any injuries would be handled by the already overwhelmed VICP.
The CICP, the only program that covers COVID-19 vaccine injuries at this time, is even less equipped to deal with them, Rohde told The Defender.
“For COVID-19 vaccine-injured people, the CICP is the worst place, it’s the worst option,” Rohde said, “because it is not really a compensation program, it’s a reimbursement program for medical costs.”
Read More: U.S. Approves First 3 COVID Vaccine Injury Claims