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    Girl, 15, dies of Covid on day she was due to get vaccine

    Family of Jorja Halliday from Portsmouth say medics did ‘everything they could to save her’

    A 15-year-old girl who tested positive for Covid-19 has died on the day she was due to have her vaccine, her family said.

    Jorja Halliday, from Portsmouth, died at the Queen Alexandra hospital on Tuesday, having tested positive for the virus four days earlier.

    Her mother, Tracey Halliday, 40, said that the GCSE student at the Portsmouth Academy was a “loving girl” with lots of friends, a talented kickboxer and an aspiring musician.

    Halliday said: “She was very active, she liked to go out and spend time with her friends and loved spending time with her brothers and sisters.

    “Growing up, she turned into a beautiful young lady, always wanting to help others, always there for everybody. It’s heart-wrenching because your kids are always meant to outlive you, and that’s the one thing I can’t get over.”

    She said that Jorja, who did not have any underlying health conditions, had developed flu-like symptoms before she took the PCR test that gave a positive result, leading to her isolating at their home.

    Jorja was struggling to eat on Sunday and by Monday she could not eat at all because of her throat hurting.

    A doctor prescribed antibiotics, but Jorja’s condition worsened and she was seen by a doctor who said her heart rate was double what it should be and she was taken to hospital.

    Halliday said: “They realised how serious it was and I was still allowed to touch her, hold her hand, hug her and everything else. They did allow me that. I’m at the point where I can’t comprehend that it’s happened.

    “I was with her the whole time. They tried to put her on a ventilator to give her body a chance to recover. Her heart rate didn’t stabilise. Her heart couldn’t take the strain. They worked as well as I think they could medically, but were unable to save her.”

    Preliminary results from the hospital’s medical examiner indicated Jorja had Covid myocarditis, heart inflammation caused by the virus. Halliday explained that Jorja had been booked to have a jab on Tuesday, but had tested positive the Saturday before. She had been planning to get the jab once the isolation period was over, but died on the day she had been scheduled to have the vaccine.

    Halliday said: “She had the best of care, I know that they did everything they could to save her.”

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