A 68-year-old mother of five has died after being inoculated by the COVID-19 vaccine. The woman, Jeanie M Evans from Effingham, Kansas, had an allergic reaction called anaphylaxis during the waiting period after receiving the shot.
According to the dispatch records of Emergency Medical Services (EMS), she was having trouble with breathing and speaking. She was injected with an EpiPen, a life-saving medication used on people who are undergoing severe allergic reactions. However, she was pronounced dead after reaching the hospital.
It is unknown whether Evans suffered from any underlying health complications. It is also unclear as to which of the three vaccines being used in the U.S. was administered to the woman – Johnson & Johnson, Moderna or Pfizer.
Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) spokesperson Kristi Zears stated that a detailed investigation into Evans’ death will be conducted “in accordance with standard protocol.” It would be premature to assign a specific cause of death prior to it.
The department also revealed that Evans’ death has been registered with the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), a national reporting system run by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Any death caused by adverse events that occur after a person is vaccinated is required to be reported to VAERS.
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“This process allows the CDC and FDA to monitor adverse events that could be related to the vaccination. As is standard protocol for any death reported in VAERS, it will be fully reviewed. The VAERS report will help to inform a more thorough investigation that can conclusively identify the specific cause of death of the individual,” KDHE said in a statement. The department also extended condolences to the departed woman’s family.
According to the CDC, over 92 million mRNA vaccine doses were administered to American citizens as of March 8. Almost 1,637 deaths have been reported after the vaccines were injected. The department has dismissed the notion that vaccination might contribute to patient deaths.
However, the CDC does admit that some people might experience anaphylaxis after getting injected with a CCP virus vaccine, usually within 30 minutes after getting the shot. Around two to five people in a million are expected to have such a reaction. A person who has experienced an allergic reaction while receiving the first shot is recommended not to get their second dose.
Overall vaccine impact
While concerns about vaccine safety exist, the inoculations are also helping people. An analysis by Public Health England (PHE) states that more than four million vaccines were administered to people over the age of 70 between December 8, 2020, and the end of January 2021. It estimated that almost 6,100 deaths were prevented by the end of February; 5,900 lives were saved among those who are 80 years or older.
The PHE estimates are similar to a study published by Warwick University which estimated that the vaccination drive prevented 6,600 deaths among all age groups. Matt Hancock, Health and Social Care Secretary, stated that the analysis proves the importance of getting vaccinated as soon as possible.
“While the vaccines have a striking impact on mortality, we don’t yet know how much these vaccines will reduce the risk of you passing COVID-19 onto others. Even if you have been vaccinated, it is really important that you continue to act like you have the virus, practice good hand hygiene, and stay at home,” Dr. Mary Ramsay, PHE Head of Immunisation, said in a statement.