A female first-year junior high school student from Taoyuan City is attached to a life support system in an intensive care unit in a Taipei City hospital after being diagnosed with myocarditis following vaccination with the Pfizer BioNtech vaccine.
The Taoyuan City Health Department said that the student was vaccinated on September 24 and developed fever on October 5. The girl was suspected to be suffering from a cold and sought treatment at a clinic in Taoyuan City. However, when the fever persisted, with the addition of wheezing and tachycardia, October 6, she was transferred to Mackay Memorial Hospital in Taipei City where it was confirmed that she was suffering from myocarditis.
The student was conscious when taken to hospital, but is currently in a coma and attached to an extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machine (ECMO), according to the Central News Agency.
Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) spokesman Chuang Jen-hsiang said that as of September 29 there were a total of 20 cases of myocarditis reported among recipients of Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines. None of these cases were adolescent, or had taken the BioNtech shot.
Taiwan began a mass vaccination drive for teens aged 12 to 18 in high schools around the country starting September 22. When asked at today’s daily press briefing whether the case was the first among adolescents, Chuang said the there could be more, but records haven’t been updated yet, and the information will be available in a few days.
Some doctors question the need for adolescents to take the second dose, Hong Kong has limited teen vaccination to one shot, and South Korea has recorded many cases of sudden death among young people after receiving the BioNtech vaccine, it was pointed out at the press briefing.
Chuang said that the CECC has not seen any cases of sudden death among teenagers domestically. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has not made a decision on whether the second shot should not go ahead, but the CECC will continue to observe, and the time to administer the second shot has not yet been determined.
Cover picture: High school students in Taoyuan City wait to be vaccinated. From Taoyuan City Mayor Facebook page.
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