‘No reason’ yet to connect death of a man in Hong Kong to Sinovac vaccine, DOH says

Published March 3, 2021, 5:46 PM

by Analou de Vera

The Department of Health (DOH) said there is “no reason to believe” yet that the death of a 63-year-old man in Hong Kong is connected to his vaccination with Sinovac coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine.

A health worker prepares the vaccine made by Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac at the Sta. Ana Hospital on March 2, 2021.
(Manila Public Information Office photo / MANILA BULLETIN)

“At present we have no reason to believe that this death was in any way associated with the vaccine. The Hong Kong authorities will investigate the death,” DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said in a message to reporters on Wednesday, March 3.

“If they find an association with the vaccine then they will issue an alert to WHO (World Health Organization) and share it with other countries,” she added.

Authorities in Hong Kong are currently investigating the “death of a chronically ill man two days after he received China’s Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine,” the report of South China Morning Post (SCMP) on March 2 stated.

The report also said that Hong Kong authorities “cautioned that no connection had been ascertained yet.”

Based on SCMP’s report, the 63-year-old man was vaccinated last Feb. 26. Two days later he was sent to a hospital after “suffering shortness of breath.”

“Every death is a tragedy for the families involved, but among the elderly and people with chronic conditions there are deaths every week. We will update you as and when we receive more information on this,” said Vergeire.

On Sunday, Feb. 28, a total 600,000 doses of Sinovac vaccines donated by Chinese government arrived in the Philippines, paving the way for the country’s rollout of its vaccination program.

The DOH said 756 healthcare workers were inoculated during the first day of the COVID-19 vaccination program.