• A California man recently died within hours after getting the COVID-19 vaccine
  • Officials have ruled out the vaccine as a "contributing factor" to the man's death
  • Officials also apologized for earlier comments about some people's reactions to its announcement

The COVID-19 vaccine has now been ruled out as a factor in the death of a California man who passed away mere hours after getting inoculated. Officials also apologized for its earlier comments on the original announcement.

Placer County Sheriff's Office (PCSO) recently announced the death of a 64-year-old health care worker just hours after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine on Jan. 21. Exactly which vaccine the man received was not specified and officials noted that "any reports surrounding the cause of death are premature." However, it was known that the man had tested positive for COVID-19 in December. Naturally, the report on the man's death attracted the attention of many.

This weekend, about a week after the initial announcement, Placer County officials announced that investigations have "ruled out" the COVID-19 vaccine as a contributing factor to the man's death. It turns out, officials noted in a Facebook post, that the man had underlying medical conditions and was actually presenting symptoms of an illness at the time he got the vaccine.

"Clinical examination and lab results have determined the COVID-19 vaccine has been ruled out as a contributing factor in the individual's death," the post reads, also explaining that its previous decision to inform the public about the case and investigation was because the man began complaining about the side effects within 10 minutes after receiving the vaccine.

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In the same post, officials also apologized for its earlier comments after the initial announcement.

"We would also like to take this moment to sincerely apologize for some of the Facebook comments made by our agency after we first informed the community of this incident," the post reads. "We realize how they were taken by the public, and it should not have happened."

This is because at the time, some commenters questioned why the office released the information before a link between the vaccine and man's death has been made, while others also presented concerns that the announcement could undermine people's confidence in the vaccine.

Even California state Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) questioned why the information was shared.

"Anti-vaccine extremists exaggerate and amplify serious events that occur after vaccination, falsely implicating vaccines when no causal evidence has been found, to increase anxiety about vaccination," Sen. Pan said in a recent statement. "A headline or speculative report can be misconstrued, intentionally by some, as a reason to frighten people from vaccinating."

However, Placer County Sheriff's Office replies to the comments on the post were rather brusque, Sacramento Bee reported.

"If you’re unhappy with the set of information we have provided, feel free to unfollow this page," one comment read.

In another comment, the office noted its protocols, explaining that it is sharing "what we can to the public."

So far, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises those who have had COVID-19 to still get vaccinated because of the possibility of getting reinfected. However, it also advised that the vaccination of those who are currently infected should be post-poned until they have fully recovered if they developed symptoms and, once they have met the criteria to stop isolation.

covid vaccine
A representational image of a vaccine is pictured. AFP / Damien MEYER