CDC, Miami-Dade investigate death of Miami Beach doctor following COVID-19 vaccine
To his loved ones and patients, Miami Beach doctor Gregory Michael will be remembered as a “pure soul” and “gentle person” who enjoyed fishing and playing guitar.
The 56-year-old obstetrician-gynecologist, who died Sunday about two weeks after he received a COVID-19 vaccine, is said to have helped “grow Miami one baby at a time,” delivering hundreds of healthy children into the world.
“He almost felt like a TV doctor,” said Carmen Costomiris, a patient of 10 years whose son Michael delivered in 2013. “Everybody loved him.”
Michael ran his own private practice at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach for 12 years, according to his website. The Miami native also worked as a clinical instructor and faculty member for the physician assistant program at Barry University and Miami Dade College.
The Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner’s Office is investigating Michael’s death in conjunction with the Florida Department of Health and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Pfizer, the manufacturer of the vaccine Michael received Dec. 18, said Michael died of a “highly unusual clinical case of severe thrombocytopenia, a condition that decreases the body’s ability to clot blood and stop internal bleeding.”
“We are actively investigating this case, but we don’t believe at this time that there is any direct connection to the vaccine,” a company spokesman said in an email.
The Medical Examiner’s Office, which conducted an autopsy Tuesday, has not ruled out a connection to the vaccine, said Darren Caprara, director of operations at the county office.
“The cause of death is pending the completion of studies being done by the medical examiner and the Centers for Disease Control,” Caprara said in an email. “The case is still under investigation, so nothing has been finalized.”