The US Health and Human Services VAERS FAQ for COVID-19 says (emphasis in original):
What adverse events should healthcare providers report to VAERS after COVID-19 vaccination?
[...] Healthcare providers who administer COVID-19 vaccines are required by law to report to VAERS the following after vaccination:
Serious AEs regardless of causality. Serious AEs per FDA are defined as:
I want to understand this legal requirement to report deaths. In particular, is there an associated time limit after vaccination?
For example, if someone receives a vaccine dose and then dies non-violently the next day, and their healthcare provider is aware of both facts, I believe the provider is required by this law (which law?) to report it to VAERS. But what if they die non-violently six months later? What about six years? (I'm excluding violent deaths on the assumption they are clearly not related to vaccination, and hence exempt from this requirement.)
That page has a blurb about time periods and a link to a table:
What are healthcare providers required to report to VAERS?
Healthcare providers are required by law to report to VAERS:
- Any adverse event listed in the VAERS Table of Reportable Events Following Vaccination that occurs within the specified time period after vaccination
The linked document mentions numerous vaccines and toxoids, but COVID-19 vaccines are not listed. The seemingly closest is "Any new vaccine recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for routine administration to children" (which is not true of COVID-19 vaccines, but I assume will be at some point), which says "[...] C. Any acute complication or sequelae (including death) of above events (interval - not applicable) [...]". This seems to say there is no applicable limit in that case, but surely there's some other requirement like a suspicion of a connection to the vaccine, right? Otherwise every non-violent death of someone who was vaccinated as a child would require a VAERS report. And anyway I'm interested in the COVID-19 vaccines.