Families 'give up legal action' against Astrazeneca after Covid vaccine blood clot deaths

Award-winning BBC radio presenter Lisa Shaw, who died due to complications from the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine (PA)
Award-winning BBC radio presenter Lisa Shaw, who died due to complications from the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine (PA)

Several families who attempted to sue Astrazeneca after loved ones died after taking its covid-19 vaccine have reportedly given up their legal action.

Twelve families have dropped their cases against the pharmaceutical company, the Telegraph has been reported, after being told they would likely lose.

Among them is Gareth Eve whose wife Lisa Shaw, a BBC presenter, died due to complications from taking the vaccine in 2021.

The father-of-one told the BBC in April last year that legal action was the only option of moving forward, adding: “We're not crackpots or conspiracy theorists, we're husbands and wives and family members who have lost somebody - that's all it is.

“Whatever the money is, it's not going to bring my son's mam back.”

Astrazeneca’s labs (PA Media)
Astrazeneca’s labs (PA Media)

They have reportedly given up their action as the leaflet given out at vaccine centres warned that: “Extremely rare cases of blood clots with low levels of platelets have been observed following vaccination with Covid-19 vaccine Astrazeneca.”

Around one in 50,000 vaccine recipients under the age of 50 were said to be at risk of getting the blood clot with low platelets. This compares to around one in 12,500 dying in childbirth and one in 100,000 dying after receiving a general anaesthetic.

The Telegraph said that there are still more than 50 active cases against Astrazeneca from those who were not warned about the blood clot potential.

There have been at least 80 blood clot related deaths of people who have had the jab.

The Government’s vaccine damage payment scheme entitles people who suffer adverse reactions that lead to death or a 60 per cent disability a one-off payment of £120,000.

Mr Eve said this was not enough with many having died or been forced out of work.

He added: “It’s like the Government and Astrazeneca have wriggled off the hook on a technicality when you just think, ‘come on, what is the right thing to do here?’

“In my opinion there is a battle here that needs to be had, but I’m not even able to do that anymore.”

Sarah Moore, a partner at law firm Leigh Day, added: “We feel desperately sorry for Gareth and the other families affected.

“These cases should not have to be fought through the courts. If there was a functioning support scheme, then litigation wouldn’t be necessary.”

Astrazeneca has been approached by the reporter for comment.

A statement used in the Telegraph said: “Our sympathy goes out to anyone who has lost loved ones or reported health problems. Patient safety is our highest priority and regulatory authorities have clear and stringent standards to ensure the safe use of all medicines, including vaccines.”

It added: “From the body of evidence in clinical trials and real-world data, the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine has continuously been shown to have an acceptable safety profile and regulators around the world consistently state that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks of extremely rare potential side effects.”