Coronavirus: Switzerland denies rumors that COVID vaccine causes death | News | DW

Swiss medical authorities have dismissed rumors about the BioNTech-Pfizer coronavirus vaccine causing the death of an elderly patient.

The death of the 91-year-old in the central canton of Lucerne has been widely reported in Switzerland. The Swiss therapeutic agency, Swissmedic, confirmed the incident on Monday, but said the patient had already suffered from multiple illnesses.

“Explanations by cantonal health authorities and Swissmedic determined that a link between the death and the COVID-19 vaccine was highly unlikely due to the medical history and course of the disease,” reads a statement.

“Neither the medical history nor the acute course of diseases indicates a direct causal link between the COVID-19 vaccine and death,” he said.

The regulator said the death certificate would cite the previous illnesses as a ‘natural cause of death’.

The manufacturer responds

Pfizer and BioNTech said in a statement that they were aware of the incident, and that their “thoughts are with the grieving family.”

“Serious side effects, including non – vaccine – related deaths, will unfortunately occur at a similar rate as in the general population of the elderly and individuals at risk currently being prioritized before vaccination.

A view of the town of Ebikon

The patient was apparently a resident of a care home in the municipality of Ebikon

The Swiss media initially reported the matter through a coronavirus-skeptical doctor. According to initial reports, the nursing home resident received the vaccine on Dec. 24 and died five days later. They have apparently reacted badly to a flu vaccination in the past.

Millions of people have already received the BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine without serious side effects. Nearly 1.8 million people have died from COVID-19 itself, but almost more than 7,500 in Switzerland.

In Israel, a 75-year-old man, who had previously had heart attacks, allegedly died of a heart attack two hours after receiving the BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine. According to the Israeli health authorities, there does not appear to be a link between the man’s death and his vaccination.

Lucerne fired the first of the 107,000 shots Switzerland has received so far, with the elderly being the first recipients.

aw / dj (Reuters, AFP, dpa)