Mass public-health measures always involve a trade-off between expected benefits and known and potential risks or harms. Harms include both short-term and long-term or inter-generational harms (e.g. poverty). Separately, they must at all times comply with basic human rights requirements. These fundamental realities have been ignored in much of the public-health response to the Covid-19 event, including mass vaccination.
Vaccines, like all medications, have potential risks and benefits. When a new class of medication is introduced, risks of harm are of particular relevance as no predicates are available beyond the duration of existing studies. Such concerns apply particularly to children and pregnant women, in whom the impacts are less predictable and may affect development. The overall effectiveness of a medication should always be assessed through measuring its impact on all-cause morbidity and mortality, and reported as such when considered for mass use.
Where mass, population-wide medications are employed, the acceptable evidential bar for the assurance of benefit and the avoidance of risk becomes higher. For consent to be fully informed it must include full disclosure of all known risks, and make clear any areas with significant potential unknowns. Any coercion, anathema to basic principles of public-health and international norms on human rights, is unacceptable.