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The heartbroken family of a 26-year-old graduate who died from ‘catastrophic’ blood clots on his brain two weeks after he received an AstraZeneca vaccine are set to take legal action over his death.
Jack Hurn, from Redditch, died last June, after receiving his first dose at a Dudley vaccine centre on May 29.
On Monday, an inquest will open into his death, which his family – who are considering a clinical negligence claim – hope will provide the answers they are looking for.
Lawyers for the family say he and his girlfriend Alex Jones were told there was no Pfizer vaccine available on the day he was vaccinated.
They had allegedly asked staff about alternative vaccines as they were ‘aware of concerns around the use of AstraZeneca’ for younger people.
Jack Hurn, from Redditch, died from blood clots on his brain two weeks after he received an AstraZeneca vaccine last year
Lawyers for the family say he and his girlfriend Alex Jones (pictured) were told there was no Pfizer vaccine available
Lawyers say medical advice at the time recommended that under-30s should get an alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine after it was revealed that younger people were at greater risk of blood clots.
The risk was reported to be ‘extremely rare’, with less than one in 100,000 experiencing the clots.
But staff were said to have reassured them that the jab was safe and they went ahead with it.
A spokesperson for the law firm said: ‘The family are looking at a clinical negligence claim but are waiting for the results of the inquest to decide on next steps.’
The automotive design graduate, 26, had recently bought his first home with his girlfriend
On Monday, an inquest will open into his death, which his family (pictured) hope will provide the answers they are looking for
Mr Hurn, originally from Devon, began suffering headaches within days and died on June 11 last year at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital after doctors allegedly described him as having ‘catastrophic’ blood clots on the brain.
The automotive design graduate had recently bought his first home with Ms Jones.
His partner, who also received the same jab at the same time, found out after his death that he was planning to propose to her that summer.
Mr Hurn’s devastated family have instructed clinical negligence specialists at Midlands law firm FBC Manby Bowdler, after raising concerns about advice given at the vaccine clinic and the standard of care received in hospital once he fell ill.
After his death, Mr Hurn’s partner Alex Jones found out that he was going to propose that summer
His partner also received the same jab at the same time, but within days, Mr Hurn began suffering headaches
Risk of blood clots in Covid-19 vaccines
Safety concerns over AstraZeneca’s jab first emerged in January 2021, and prompted EU nations to shun the British-made vaccine en masse.
AstraZeneca’s jab is thought to cause blood clots in one in 100,000 people.
Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose jab — which works in a very similar way — has also been linked to the same complication.
However, regulators have not spotted any consistent trend between Pfizer’s mRNA vaccine and blood clots.
Its jab — linked to a very rare kind of heart inflammation — is based on pioneering technology.
Several countries in Europe stopped using the Oxford-designed AstraZeneca jab in March 2021 after a series of blood clots, with younger people facing a slightly higher risk.
Regulators analysed the data and found benefits vastly outweighed the risk for most.
In the absence of doubt, UK health chiefs opted against routinely offering the jab to under-30s on April 7, 2021, who face a vanishingly rare risk of dying from Covid.
In a Spanish research study, Pfizer’s vaccine was found to be just as likely to trigger blood clots as AstraZeneca’s.
Since findings first emerged, there has been concern about the vaccine and its side effects, which experts fear has fuelled hesitancy among some groups in the UK and overseas.
Lawyer Michael Portman-Hann, an associate with the firm’s clinical negligence team, said the family hoped an inquest being held later this month in Birmingham would answer some of the questions they have around Mr Hurn’s death.
He said: ‘Jack, a first class honours graduate of Coventry University, had recently bought his first home with his partner, Alex Jones, who also received her vaccine at the same time. She only found out after his death that he was planning to propose that summer.
‘Jack’s parents, Tracey and Peter, his sister, Abby, Alex and both their families are completely devastated and are still trying to come to terms with what happened.
‘Jack and Alex asked staff at the vaccine clinic about the Pfizer alternative as they were aware of concerns around the use of Astra Zeneca for younger people.
‘Alex and Jack were reassured by the staff at the centre that the vaccine was safe, and with no Pfizer doses available that day, they felt encouraged by vaccine staff to go ahead with what was on offer.
Mr Portman-Hann continued: ‘Jack began to suffer headaches which got progressively worse and he was admitted to the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch where a scan revealed a clot on his brain.
‘Jack’s family, who live in Devon, found it very difficult to get up-to-date information from hospital staff over the course of a number of days.
‘They say there was confusion about whether Jack had actually suffered a stroke while at Redditch and could get no clear answers about his condition.
‘Jack was transferred to the Queen Elizabeth (hospital) in Birmingham, where after scans a consultant informed them that there were numerous bleeds on Jack’s brain which were catastrophic.
‘Given the family’s concerns over advice given during the vaccine clinic visit and what happened in the period between Jack being admitted to hospital and his death, we are supporting them to find answers which we’re hopeful an inquest will help provide.’
An inquest will be held at Birmingham and Solihull Coroner’s Court commencing on May 23.