BBC presenter died after suffering blood clots following Astrazeneca jab, family says
An award-winning BBC radio presenter died in hospital after suffering blood clots after she received the AstraZeneca vaccine, her devastated family has said.
Lisa Shaw who worked for BBC Newcastle, developed “severe” headaches a week after having the jab and fell seriously ill a few days later, relatives said in a statement.
The 44-year-old died at the Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle, on Friday afternoon having been treated in intensive care for blood clots and bleeding.
According to a BBC report, Newcastle coroner Karen Dilks has issued an interim fact-of-death certificate which lists a “complication of AstraZeneca Covid-19 virus vaccination” as a consideration.
The BBC said the document does not determine a cause of death, which was still under investigation.
People under 40 in the UK are being offered an alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine following reports of extremely rare blood clots on the brain coupled with low blood platelet count.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) had said the benefits of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine continue to outweigh risks for most people. It has not proven the vaccine causes the clots but has said the link is getting firmer.
Since Shaw’s death was announced on air on Sunday, tributes from colleagues and listeners have poured in.
In a statement released by the BBC, the mother-of-one’s family said: “Lisa developed severe headaches a week after receiving her AstraZeneca vaccine and fell seriously ill a few days later.
“She was treated by the Royal Victoria Infirmary’s intensive care team for blood clots and bleeding in her head.
“Tragically, she passed away, surrounded by her family, on Friday afternoon.
“We are devastated and there is a Lisa-shaped hole in our lives that can never be filled.
“We will love and miss her always.
“It’s been a huge comfort to see how loved she was by everyone whose lives she touched, and we ask for privacy at this time to allow us to grieve as a family.”
An MHRA spokesperson said: “We are saddened to hear about the death of Lisa Shaw and our thoughts are with her family.
“As with any serious suspected adverse reaction, reports with a fatal outcome are fully evaluated by the MHRA, including an assessment of post-mortem details if available.
“Our detailed and rigorous review into reports of blood clots occurring together with thrombocytopenia is ongoing.”
Shaw previously worked in commercial radio and won a Sony Gold Award in 2012 for the breakfast show she hosted on Real Radio with co-host Gary Philipson.
Rik Martin, acting executive editor at BBC Radio Newcastle, said: “Everyone at the station is devastated and thinking about Lisa’s lovely family.
“She was a trusted colleague, a brilliant presenter, a wonderful friend, and a loving wife and mum.
“She loved being on the radio and was loved by our audiences.
“We’ve lost someone special who meant a great deal to a great many people.”
Chris Burns, head of BBC Local Radio, added: “Lisa was a talented presenter who had already achieved a lot and would have achieved much more.”
A spokesperson for the hospital said: “We were incredibly saddened by the news of Lisa’s death but it would be inappropriate for us to discuss individual details about a patient. Our thoughts and heartfelt condolences are with the family at this difficult time.”
The risk of a clot linked to the jab is thought to be about one in 100,000 for people in their 40s. The risk of death in any age due to such a clot has been put at about one in a million.