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HomeCOVID-19Kicking and screaming, officials release vaccine deaths data

Kicking and screaming, officials release vaccine deaths data


MORE than 15 months after death data linked to vaccine status was requested, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) have produced some figures.

Their reluctance to share is a story in itself:

2nd February 2023 – FOI first written to UKHSA for them to release the dates of vaccination and death data.

9th May 2023 – UKHSA admitted they held this data but said it could not be released because they had to protect people’s privacy.

21st May 2023 – a proposal was put to them to anonymise the data (which included dates of death) by randomly adding or subtracting a small number of days from the date. This is a process known as ‘barnardisation‘.

31st May 2023 – UKHSA refuse, saying they ‘do not have to create new information‘ under FOI law. 

28th June 2023 – Internal review agrees that they do not have to create new data.

4th August 2023 – Information Commissioner’s Office suggested starting again with a new FOI but agreed there was case law that the proposed anonymisation would not count as the creation of new data. A new FOI was submitted that day.

4th September 2023 – UKHSA again confirm that they hold the data and again claimed anonymising it would amount to the creation of new data.

The Information Commissioner’s Office were not prepared to look at this until an internal review had been carried out by UKHSA – so that was duly requested on 27th September 2023 and hit another brick wall on 25th October – finally allowing another approach to the ICO.

On 2nd November 2023, a second appeal to the ICO was filed and receipt was acknowledged. The request became ‘eligible for investigation’ on 11th November.

30th April 2024 – UKHSA produced a 1,300-page PDF of data – which speaks volumes about their attitude to transparency. They had not barnadised the data but instead put the deaths into one-month buckets.

13th May 2024 – UKHSA produced a csv file of the data.

UKHSA justified their grouping the data into monthly deaths saying:

This is utterly disingenous. There is absolutely no personal information being disclosed here. It is a date of vaccination and an anonymised date of death that has been requested – that is all.

Perhaps the UKHSA mixes in very different circles from me, but the bereaved that I know are all too keen that deaths be properly investigated.

I have appealed again to the Information Commissioner’s Office to receive the data as requested – by day of death but anonymised by randomly adding or subtracting one or two days from the data. Watch this space.

In the meantime the data is here.

If you plan to analyse it note the following:

When one person dies, it is recorded in this data as a death following each of the doses of vaccine they have ever had.
Record keeping was inadequate such that there are people who die after a 3rd dose who never had a 2nd dose and dying after a 2nd dose who never had a 1st dose.

I will analyse and post key findings.

This article appeared in Dr Clare Craig on May 25, 2024, and is republished by kind permission

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Dr Clare Craig
Dr Clare Craig
Dr Clare Craig FRCPath is a Diagnostic Pathologist who worked in the NHS and reached consultant level in 2009. She was the day to day pathology lead for the cancer arm of the 100,000 Genomes Project. She contributed to HART in a personal capacity.

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