WELLINGTON: Authorities in New Zealand announced the country’s first recorded death connected to the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination on Monday.
The information was published by the health ministry following an investigation into the death of a lady after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine by an independent COVID-19 vaccine safety monitoring board. The woman’s age was not given in the ministry’s announcement.
According to the statement, the board determined that the woman died as a result of myocarditis, which is an uncommon adverse effect of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination. Myocarditis is an inflammation of the heart muscle that can impair the organ’s ability to pump blood and cause irregular heartbeats.
The health ministry stated, “This is the first example in New Zealand where a death in the days following immunization has been related to the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.” Pfizer’s media staff in New Zealand did not respond promptly to an emailed request for comment.
The case has been referred to the coroner, and the cause of death has yet to be determined, according to the health ministry. The independent board, on the other hand, concluded that the myocarditis was most likely caused by the immunization.
The board also observed that other medical conditions were occurring at the same time, which could have altered the outcome of the immunization.
“The benefits of vaccination with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine continue to vastly outweigh the risk of both COVID-19 infection and vaccine adverse effects, including myocarditis,” the study concluded.
Pfizer/BioNTech, Janssen, and AstraZeneca vaccines have received provisional approval from New Zealand regulators so far. However, the Pfizer vaccine is the only one that has been approved for public use.
After nearly six months of virus-free status, New Zealand is dealing with an outbreak of the Delta strain of COVID-19. On Monday, it reported 53 more cases, bringing the total number of infections in the current outbreak to 562.
To combat the spread of the Delta version, a national lockdown was imposed earlier this month.