Promila Devi, 55, a frontline health worker died due to serious complications she developed after getting vaccinated for Covid-19 at Hamirpur district in Himachal Pradesh.
This is the first such case of death involving an Anganwadi worker who had taken a vaccination shot in her home district 23 days back.
Confirming about the death, Dr Janak Raj, Senior Medical Superintendent, Indira Gandhi Medical College, Shimla said the patient was shifted to IGMC from Dr Rajendra Prasad Medical College, Tanda (Kangra) only a few hours before she died.
“She had received the vaccination shot on January 23 but developed health complications on February 6. After initial treatment and reviewing her condition, she was rushed to Tanda, where he was treated for her kidney failure. She was tested for Covid-19 also she was negative. She was also on ventilator support. As condition became precarious on Saturday, she was brought to IGMC Shimla,” he said.
State health secretary Amitabh Awasthi said an inquiry has been ordered into the death of the woman to find the exact cause of her demise after the vaccination. The post-mortem report, which is awaited, will give some clues about the loss of life.
Chief Medical Officer (Hamirpur) Dr Archana Soni said the death of the Anganwadi worker after vaccination is a matter of concern. The higher authorities in the government have been appraised of the circumstance.
Dr Janak Raj released a letter written by union Additional Secretary (Health) Manohar Agnani asking the state governments to take strict measures after any death following vaccination of the frontline workers in the country.
“There is a need that each death is investigated meticulously as per the National AEFI Guidelines. All health officials involved in the Vaccination program have already been made aware that Post Mortem procedure will be a very important component of the investigation” he wrote.
The post-mortem should be conducted at the nearest Medical College Hospital or the district level by a Forensic expert and Pathologist. The process of post-mortem examination (external and internal) should be video-graphed.
The tissue samples (viscera) of the deceased should be sent for histopathological examination in all cases and toxicological analysis in specific cases to the designated medical college or forensic science lab for analysis and followed up for early submission of reports.
Properly conducted post-mortem reports with histopathological examination reports and toxicology analysis reports would help to conduct quality causality assessments of AEFI deaths.