To qualify for cover, a vaccine injury must result in one or more of the following:
- permanent or significant injury;
- serious harm to a person’s health; or
- other serious damage or death.
The Regulations do not define permanent or significant injury, serious harm or serious damage. The Minister of Health will publish a schedule with a list of vaccine injuries covered by the scheme. Side effects such as headaches, diarrhoea and vomiting are unlikely to meet the test for serious harm or permanent injury.
According to the Regulations, claimants may lodge a in their personal capacity. If a vaccine injury results in a death, the deceased’s dependent may also lodge a claim. To succeed, a claimant must prove that they have suffered harm, loss or damage caused by a vaccine injury.
In terms of regulation 96, any person who elects to submit a claim to the Scheme waives and abandons their right to institute legal proceedings against any party for a claim arising from harm, loss or damage allegedly caused by a vaccine.
How to submit a claim
A claim must be submitted in terms of a form published by the Minister of Health. A claim will be assessed and adjudicated by a panel. If a claimant is unhappy with the recommendation by the panel, they may appeal to the Appeal Panel chaired by a retired judge.
Mandatory vaccine policy?
The Scheme brings relief to the employers who are considering introducing mandatory workplace vaccination policies because the Scheme introduces an avenue to mitigate the risk of litigation resulting from claims of harm, loss, or damage as a result of taking a vaccine.