Urgent probe as girl dies after cervical cancer jab

Probably just a coincidence.

From Google/AFP:

LONDON — An urgent investigation was under way on Tuesday after a 14-year-old school girl collapsed and died after being vaccinated against cervical cancer.

The girl, who was named as Natalie Morton, died on Monday shortly after being injected with the Cervarix vaccine at the Blue Coat CofE school in Coventry.

The vaccine, which is made by pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline, is being administered to schoolgirls as part of a national vaccination programme to protect against the disease.

Health authorities immediately isolated the suspect batch of vaccine which protects against Human Papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually-transmitted virus which is the primary cause of cervical cancer.

“The incident happened shortly after the girl had received her HPV vaccine in the school,” said Dr. Caron Grainger, joint head of public health for the National Health Service (NHS) in Coventry and Coventry City Council.

“No link can be made between the death and the vaccine until all the facts are known and a post-mortem takes place.”

She added: “We are conducting an urgent and full investigation into the events surrounding this tragedy.”

In a statement GSK said it was working with health authorities “to better understand this case, as at this stage the exact cause of this tragic death is unknown.

“As a precautionary measure, the batch of vaccine involved has been quarantined until the situation is fully understood,” it said, noting that over 1.4 million doses of Cervarix have already been administered across the country.

To date, the “vast majority” of adverse reactions were either down to the known side-effects of the drug, or “due to the injection process and not the vaccine itself,” the company said.

Awareness of cervical cancer was raised earlier this year by the death of British reality television star, Jade Goody, who flagged the importance of women having regular cervical smear tests as she herself was dying of the disease.

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