The South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA) has confirmed that one patient has died after developing the very rare Guillain-Barré syndrome following a Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 injection.

SAHPRA says this is the first death out of 160 deaths reported after vaccination where the cause could be directly linked to a Covid-19 vaccination.

SAHPRA’s CEO Dr. Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela says an investigation found the patient developed the rare Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) after vaccination and then died.

The Minister of Health Dr. Joe Phaahla has reiterated that complications or deaths following a Covid-19 vaccine are very rare and should be immediately reported.

Phaahla says there are several channels patients can follow, should they need to report an adverse reaction or vaccine injury.

The person’s age and other personal details were not disclosed for confidentiality reasons.

Last July, U.S. authorities added a warning to a factsheet for J&J’s vaccine saying data suggested there was an increased risk of GBS in the six weeks after vaccination.

At the time it noted 100 preliminary reports of GBS in vaccine recipients, including 95 serious cases and one reported death.

Europe’s medicines regulator last year added GBS as a possible side-effect of AstraZeneca’s COVID vaccine which, like J&J’s, uses viral vector technology.

Phaahla said as of mid-July, there had been just over 6,200 “adverse events” reported to SAHPRA out of the more than 37 million Covid-19 vaccine doses administered in the country, equivalent to 0.017%.

Read more here.

Related articles: