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Compensation award after Covid vaccine death.


A woman whose partner died after having an AstraZeneca jab became the first person to receive compensation after a Covid vaccine death.

Vikki Spit's former rock singer fiancé, Zion Lord, 48, of Alston, Cumbria, fell ill eight days after he had his injection and died in May 2021.

She was awarded the maximum settlement of £120,000 but said it was not enough.

She said that she had got into debt after losing her partner’s earnings; had to borrow money to pursue the claim and should have been awarded closer to £180,000.

Ms Spit added that she had to wait too long for compensation under the Vaccine Damage Payment Scheme 1979, and the amount had not kept track with inflation since the scheme was set up.

Vaccine damage payments are available to anyone who has become disabled as a result of having a vaccination and people can also apply on behalf of someone who has died.

The scheme offers one-off, tax-free sums of up to £120,000 and, while payments do not affect people's rights to take legal action, they can have implications for their benefits.

Ms Spit called an ambulance for her partner when he began suffering "excruciating" headaches on 13 May 2021. He died in Newcastle's Royal Victoria Infirmary six days later. His death certificate confirmed he died due to complications from the vaccine.

However, it took the NHS Business Services Authority, the Newcastle-based administrators of the compensation scheme, more than a year to make the award.

Ms Spit is now calling on the government to increase the maximum pay-out to better reflect the loss of earnings that a person in their 40s would have made before their retirement.      

She said: "I am still heartbroken by the sudden loss of my partner of 21 years, and, alongside this emotional trauma, I have also been faced with financial hardship as a result of the loss of Zion's contribution to household finances.

"There just isn't the proper financial aid coming from the government to support those who have lost family to the vaccine."

Ms Spit, who maintains she is not opposed to vaccinations, said paramedics judged that Zion Lord was suffering from a migraine when they were called to their home.

The writer and filmmaker suffered from a seizure a few days later but “did not wake up” following surgery.

Vikki Spit said Zion Lord was fit and healthy and would have had a good chance of survival if he had received treatment earlier.

More than 500m people are understood to be seeking compensation for problems caused by Covid jabs and that the final number could be in the thousands. Victims of severe side effects can apply for up to £120,000 under the Vaccines Damage Payment Scheme.

An NHS Business Services Authority spokesperson said: "All Vaccine Damage Payment Scheme (VDPS) claims are medically assessed by an independent, third party medical assessor.

"The NHSBSA has started to receive outcomes from the independent medical assessor for the first batch of COVID-19 related claims sent for assessment. We will contact each claimant directly as soon as we have an update on their individual claim.