Our firm’s founder, vaccine attorney Leah V. Durant, was recently quoted in an NBC 4 Washington article discussing compensation claims for shoulder injuries related to vaccine administration (SIRVA). The article focused on the recent decision made by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) not to remove SIRVA from the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program’s Vaccine Injury Table.
SIRVA to Remain Covered Under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP)
As vaccine attorney Leah V. Durant told NBC 4 Washington, “The last thing that we need to be doing right now is changing the program to take away individuals’ rights to receive compensation should something go wrong. . . . I think we need to be looking at policies that ensure public trust, that make folks feel comfortable with the process, and that encourage widespread vaccination.”
Shoulder injuries related to vaccine administration have been expressly covered under the VICP since 2017—the last time HHS made any significant changes to the Vaccine Injury Table. A measure set to take effect in February 2021 would have eliminated this coverage, but HHS terminated the measure following the Biden-Harris administration’s transition.
With the current Vaccine Injury Table remaining in place, individuals who first experience symptoms of SIRVA within 48 hours of vaccination can seek compensation under the VICP following vaccinations for:
- Diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis
- Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Human papillomavirus (HPV)
- Measles, mumps and rubella
- Seasonal influenza
- Varicella (chickenpox)
COVID-19 Vaccine Recipients Not Eligible for VICP Compensation
During her interview with NBC 4 Washington, vaccine attorney Leah V. Durant also discussed the current status of the COVID-19 vaccination effort. As she explained, the COVID-19 vaccines currently are not covered under the VICP. This is due to these vaccines’ classification as a pandemic countermeasure, which places them under a different program called the Countermeasure Injury Compensation Program (CICP).
But, Durant also has hope that the COVID-19 vaccines will fall under the VICP in the future. The CICP provides less compensation than the VICP, and eligibility is limited to individuals diagnosed with “serious physical injuries.” It is not clear whether all forms of SIRVA meet this definition. Yet, SIRVA is a genuine concern for COVID-19 vaccine recipients—especially with mass vaccine sites employing medical professionals with limited vaccination experience.
“I think there’s no question that the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program is a far superior program to the Countermeasures Program. It’s tested, it’s been vetted, it’s paid out many, many claims, and we know how it works,” vaccine attorney Leah V. Durant told NBC 4 Washington. With the relatively high risk of SIRVA, Durant also told NBC 4 Washington that she expects a sharp rise in VICP claims in the event that HHS expands the program to cover COVID-19 vaccinations.
Contact National Vaccine Attorney Leah V. Durant
Leah V. Durant is a vaccine attorney who represents individuals and families in VICP claims nationwide. If you have questions about your legal rights, you can call 202-800-1711 or contact us online to request a free consultation.
Leah Durant Bio
Experienced litigation attorney Leah Durant focuses on representing clients in complex vaccine litigation matters. Leah Durant is the owner and principal attorney of the Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC, a litigation firm based in Washington, DC. Leah Durant and her staff represent clients and their families who suffer from vaccine-related injuries, adverse vaccine reactions and vaccine-related deaths. The Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC is dedicated to assisting individuals in recovering the highest level of compensation as quickly and efficiently as possible. To learn more, contact vaccine attorney Leah Durant today.