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article imageQuebec man dies after taking H1N1 vaccine

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By Andrew Moran     Nov 19, 2009 in Health
On Tuesday, an 80-year-old Quebec man died after taking the H1N1 Swine Flu vaccination but health officials are stating that it's too soon to link the death and vaccine.
Digital Journal reported last week that two people in China died after receiving the H1N1 Swine Flu vaccination and others have been diagnosed with Guillain Barre Syndrome but now an 80-year-old man in Montreal died after taking the H1N1 vaccine, according to CBC.
Quebec's Director of Public Health Protection, Dr. Horacio Arruda, did not know why the man took the vaccine and that final test results, which are expected to come in December, will determine whether or not the man died from the vaccine.
Canada.com reports the man died in the last three weeks but provincial officials declined to reveal details, citing confidentiality concerns. Arruda has said that most allergic reactions occur right away, which is the reason why many patients are asked to stay in the centers, “We can't say there is a causal association between the death and the flu shot.”
Nevertheless, Arruda is confident that the death will not discourage people from taking the vaccine but urged that serious reactions to the H1N1 shot are rare, “I understand that everyone is worried.”
Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. David Butler-Jones, also concurred with Arruda, “It's important to remember that just because a medical event follows vaccination, it may not have been caused by the vaccination; it may have been caused by other factors, as unfortunate events continue to occur with or without vaccine.”
The Federal Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq assured Canadians that they’re doing the right thing, AOL News reports, “It's important to remember that just because a medical event follows vaccination, it may not have been caused by the vaccination; it may have been caused by other factors, as unfortunate events continue to occur with or without vaccine. This is remarkable because normally response to the vaccine for the seasonal flu is about 60 to 80 per cent.”
The Montreal Gazette notes that public health officials have stated that only a small number of Canadians have suffered side effects from the H1N1 vaccine. 23 Quebecers have reacted negatively to the shot, including one death and 37 have died from the flu.
Currently, 1.5 million citizens of Quebec have been vaccinated since August 30 and more than 1,500 have been hospitalized.
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