Updated: Jan 30, 2021
The Orange County coroner is investigating the death of a Santa Ana healthcare worker after receiving his second dose of the coronavirus vaccine.
The OC Register reports Tim Zook, 60, an X-Ray tech at at South Coast Global Medical Center in Santa Ana, had an upset stomach and problems breathing before going to the hospital.
Zook's blood pressure soon dropped and he was transferred to UC Irvine Medical Center. "On Friday I get a call, 'His kidneys are failing. He needs to be on dialysis. If not, he could die -- but there's also a chance he might have a heart attack or stroke on dialysis because his blood pressure is so low,' " his wife Rochelle Zook told the OC Register.
While his COVID-19 tests came back negative, his wife says he had high blood pressure, but was treating it with medication, and she doesn't blame the pharmaceutical company.
A spokesman for Pfizer-BioNTech told the OC Register that the company is "aware of Zook's death and is thoroughly reviewing the matter."
"Our immediate thoughts are with the bereaved family," the company said in an emailed statement to the OC Register. "We closely monitor all such events and collect relevant information to share with global regulatory authorities. Based on ongoing safety reviews performed by Pfizer, BioNTech and health authorities, (the vaccine) retains a positive benefit-risk profile for the prevention of COVID-19 infections. Serious adverse events, including deaths that are unrelated to the vaccine, are unfortunately likely to occur at a similar rate as they would in the general population."