Acting Principal Medical Officer Dr Maryam Richards.
Acting Principal Medical Officer Dr Maryam Richards.

NO, covid19 vaccines will not alter your DNA. And no, there aren’t any microchips in any of the vaccines, either.

These were two of the main myths medical professionals sought to debunk on Wednesday at the Health Ministry’s virtual press conference.

The members of the panel – Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh, WHO county representative for TT Dr Erica Wheeler and acting Principal Medical Officer Dr Maryam Richards – were responding to commonly asked questions about covid19 vaccines.

There are currently a range of vaccines, both approved and still undergoing trials. These include the Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Sanofi vaccines.

The Pfizer vaccine is currently the only one approved by the WHO for the Caribbean region.

The first question was: Does the covid19 vaccine alter your DNA?

Richards said the question was “very interesting and topical.”

Recently in the US, a pharmacist was fired and arrested for allegedly altering 57 vials of the Moderna covid19 vaccine as he feared it would alter the recipients’ DNA.

Richards explained that while a DNA strand is initially inserted into the nucleus of the cells in one’s body, that strand is eventually destroyed.

The second question was: Is there a microchip in the covid19 vaccine?

Wheeler said this is not possible, since all the ingredients of each vaccine are known.

“For example, the Pfizer vaccine: this information (the ingredients) has to be given to WHO and Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) as part of the review and assessment of the quality, safety and efficacy of the vaccine.”

She said there are ten main ingredients in the Pfizer vaccine apart from the messenger RNA (ribonucleic acid)

“There are lipids, cholesterol, salts, sucrose…There’s nowhere in the world that the WHO and PAHO will allow any vaccine that has any damaging material in it to be approved for global use.”

Deyalsingh said people’s fears about microchips in the vaccines were the result of conspiracy theorists who continue to misinterpret research.

“We have to be so careful,” he said.

US businessman and software developer Bill Gates recently donated millions to covid19 research. He also mentioned a digital certificate of vaccination records, ie computerised immunisation cards, which, according to Deyalsingh, “The conspiracy theorists took and converted that into the vaccine having a microchip.”

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