On March 8, after four days of emergency care, a four-year-old boy in southern China succumbed to complications arising from a vaccine provided courtesy of the state healthcare system.
The boy, surnamed Shen, had developed a fever after being injected with the vaccine in the morning of March 4, the Health and Family Planning Bureau in Zijin County, Guangdong Province, told state media. An autopsy is underway and results are expected to be out within a month.
Intensive efforts to save the child’s life failed as his condition worsened.
The illict sale of improperly-stored vaccines in eastern China’s Shandong Province recently reported by state media—a mother and daughter team had made 500 million yuan (about $70 million) in the lucrative business—was found to be unrelated to the Guangdong case, which involved medicaments provided by state-run healthcare.
Sudden, mysterious deaths of toddlers in Chinese hospitals have resulted in various scandals over the last few years. In January, a 3-year-old boy being treated for a minor fever died after being given an IV, and police were brought in to restrain the distraught parents.