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Experts panel rules out link between Covid-19 jabs and deaths, side-effects

09 March 2021

By Daisy CL Mandap 

Expert panel says none of the deaths or serious illnesses are directly linked to Sinovac jabs

An expert panel has unanimously ruled out any links between the recent deaths of two people, and two others getting seriously ill, to their having received Covid-19 vaccination.

The cases included a 55-year-old woman who died on Mar 6, four days after receiving a Sinovac jab, and a 71-year-old man who died early today, five days after vaccination at a private clinic.

Panel co-convenor Dr Ivan Hung said a preliminary autopsy showed the woman, who had a history of hypertension and diabetes, could have suffered a stroke, because of tears in the aorta.

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Hung called the woman "high risk" because of her poorly controlled heart disease. “Whether they are vaccinated or not, they would still be at risk of having a sudden death,” he said.

As for the most recent death, the experts said they are still getting a detailed autopsy report on the cause of death. However, they concluded that there is insufficient evidence to suggest any of the cases were serious adverse effects of the Sinovac vaccine.

Earlier, the panel also ruled out a connection between the death of a 63-year-old man from an apparent heart attack and his having been vaccinated with Sinovac. The man, who had diabetes and high blood pressure, was reportedly found with clogged arteries after he died.

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Hung said the death rate for people who have been vaccinated is comparable to that for the general population, noting that people die everyday from chronic illnesses.

The experts say the advantages far outweigh the risks of getting vaccinated

Apart from the two deaths, the experts also took note of two patients who fell critically ill after getting vaccinated.

One of them is an 80-year-old man who was inoculated on Mar 1 and was hospitalized and put in intensive case days later. The initial check-up showed he had diabetes and stroke, and that his present condition was not caused by the vaccination.


The other one involved another diabetic, a 72-year-old woman who was taken to hospital on Mar 7 and is now in critical condition. The panel decided she may have fallen ill because she failed to take her insulin injections after her vaccination.

Meanwhile, Dr Ronald Lam, director of the Centre for Health Protection said that people who die or become seriously ill after vaccination should meet two conditions before they could get compensation from a special fund set up by the government for this purpose.

First, their medical condition must be certified by a registered doctor, and second, that medical experts are able to ascertain that the case is related to vaccination, or are unable to disregard a causal link.


The government has set aside a $1 billion compensation fund, with payouts of up to $2 million in case of death resulting from vaccination.

Lam said that as of Sunday, 91,800 people have received the vaccine from Sinovac, while 1,200 others got the jab from Pfizer/BioNTech. About 64% of those vaccinated were people aged 60 or more.

He said that as of 4pm today, there were 16 non-serious adverse reaction cases reported, and 45 such incidents that required hospitalization.

He reminded the public that anyone with a history of severe allergies or has chronic diseases should consult a doctor to assess the risk of vaccination.




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