Reuters reported that the Armed Forces of Ukraine confirmed the servicewoman's passing on March 23. The military's statement said she lost consciousness before her sudden death. Meanwhile, the health ministry remarked that investigations on what caused her death are still ongoing. It further added that she suffered from a number of underlying comorbidities – including chronic cardiovascular disease.
Aside from the woman, nine others got vaccinated with the same batch of AstraZeneca jabs on the same day. The nine people did not report any adverse reactions after getting inoculated. The female military officer's death is the first fatality recorded in Ukraine ever since it started COVID-19 vaccinations. It received an initial batch of 500,000 doses of the CoviShield vaccine – a version of the AstraZeneca jab manufactured in India.
The incident in Ukraine followed a number of European countries suspending use of the AstraZeneca vaccine over reports of blood clots in some patients. Both the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the World Health Organization (WHO) insisted the vaccine was safe, and that getting the jab outweighs its purported risks. They also stated that available data does not suggest that the AstraZeneca vaccine caused the patients' deaths.
However, German and Norwegian researchers conducting separate investigations have found that certain antibodies in the vaccine trigger blood platelets to become over-active. These overly excited blood platelets could then form clots in blood vessels, resulting in thrombosis or vessel blockage. Both teams of researchers stumbled upon the discovery after investigating incidents of blood clots in their respective countries.
While the AstraZeneca jab has been approved in many other countries, it is yet to be authorized for use in the United States. If in case it does, it will be the fourth vaccine authorized for emergency use alongside those from Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson. The Associated Press reported on March 24 that the British pharmaceutical firm seeks to apply for an emergency use authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). (Related: Aussie scientists cast doubt on low-efficacy AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine.)
However, American health officials raised concerns that the British drug manufacturer may have used incomplete data for the trial results it turned in. In a March 23 statement, the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) voiced out its concern that AstraZeneca "may have included outdated information … [providing] an incomplete view of the efficacy data."
According to the statement, the Data Safety and Monitoring Board (DSMB) alerted the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority and AstraZeneca over this faulty information. NIAID then called on the company to "work with the DSMB" to examine the efficacy data and ensure that more accurate and updated information is made public at the soonest. (Related: VAX FRAUD: AstraZeneca fudging data to declare its coronavirus jab "safe and effective".)
NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci elaborated on the DSMB's move. In a March 23 interview with STAT, the American infectious disease expert said the DSMB raised alarm bells after the results in a company press release appeared to be more favorable than more recent data submitted to the safety board.
"The [DSMB was] concerned that the data that went into the press release by [AstraZeneca] was not the most accurate and up-to-date data. That is what the DSMB communicated … in a rather harsh note. Having seen that letter, we could not just let it go unanswered," Fauci said.
The NIAID director also answered a question regarding its March 23 statement. He explained: "We just felt we could not remain silent. Because if we did remain silent, we could be understandably accused of covering something up. And we definitely didn't want to be in that position. According to Fauci, AstraZeneca's gaffe was an "unforced error."