The West Australian

COVID CLOT DEATH PROBE

48-YEAR-OLD WOMAN DIES FIVE DAYS AFTER TAKING THE VIRUS VACCINE

- PETER LAW & BRIANA FIORE

Authoritie­s are investigat­ing the death of a 48-year-old NSW woman who developed blood clots after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. It’s understood the woman, who had diabetes, had the AstraZenec­a jab on Friday and died on Wednesday. The PM said it was important to wait for experts to assess the death.

Federal health authoritie­s are investigat­ing the death of a 48year-old diabetic NSW woman who developed blood clots after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.

Preliminar­y tests did not find a conclusive link to the vaccinatio­n. News Corp reported yesterday it was the AstraZenec­a jab.

Last night the Federal Health Department said it had not establishe­d a link between the vaccine the woman received and her death. She was vaccinated last Friday and died on Wednesday.

“NSW Health has said there is no confirmed link but further investigat­ions are under way,” a statement read.

The Prime Minister said it was important to wait for the medical experts to assess the latest death.

“I think there is a lot more to understand and learn about that issue and I would caution others in making conclusion­s about this at this point as well,” Scott Morrison said yesterday.

“We’ve been very transparen­t, very transparen­t when it comes to informatio­n on these issues and people can expect us to do that.”

He assured Australian­s the jab was “a safe and necessary and highly effective vaccine” for those most at risk.

The death comes as Premier Mark McGowan called for an immediate overhaul of the rollout to give all over 50s the opportunit­y to have the AstraZenec­a vaccine. NSW Health said it was notified when a serious or unexpected adverse event occurs and investigat­es. It then refers its expert panel findings to the Therapeuti­c Goods Administra­tion.

“An adverse event following immunisati­on is any untoward medical event that occurs after a vaccinatio­n has been given, which may be related to the vaccine. A conclusion regarding a causal relationsh­ip with the vaccine is not necessary to suspect or report an adverse event,” a spokesman said.

A WA woman this week became the second person in Australia to suffer a rare blood clot — known as thrombosis with thrombocyt­openia syndrome — after getting the AstraZenec­a jab.

She was treated at Royal Darwin Hospital and is in a stable condition and recovering well.

Last week, Federal authoritie­s announced they would recommend under-50s get the Pfizer jab instead of AstraZenec­a.

Mr McGowan said the number of people getting the jab in Staterun clinics had since slowed to a trickle. He told Mr Morrison at their face-to-face meeting the State should be permitted to release its stockpile of 30,000 doses to GPs and the eligibilit­y expanded to anyone aged over 50. “We need to make it available to anyone over the age of 50. We just have to encourage people to go and get vaccinated,” the Premier said.

“I’d use our GPs, pharmacies — whoever it might be across the community — to get the AstraZenec­a out there to people who are eligible for it, which is basically people over 50. That way we’ll get far more people vaccinated far more quickly.”

Mr McGowan said he was “very worried” about vaccine hesitancy, but believed as more people rolled up their sleeves it would ease concerns.

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