Two babies from rural communities died and 37 others were hospitalized in the southern state of Chiapas after having an allergic reaction to vaccinations administered by Mexican Social Security Institute, or IMSS, personnel, state officials said.

"The Chiapas Health Secretariat is treating 37 children in the town of La Pimienta, outside the city of Simojovel, after they experienced allergic reactions to a vaccine supposedly administered by IMSS health personnel," state health officials said.

A total of "14 children are in serious condition, 22 are stable and one is in critical condition," the Chiapas Health Secretariat said in a statement.

"Two children age 1 died," the secretariat said.

Of the 14 babies listed in serious condition, six were transported early Saturday to a medical center in Tuxtla Gutierrez, the capital of Chiapas, the secretariat said.

The IMSS, for its part, said in a statement that 31 children had reactions "presumably association with the administration of these vaccines" on Friday.

Two children died and 29 others remain hospitalized, the IMSS said.

A total of 52 children received the BCG (tuberculosis), rotavirus and hepatitis B vaccines at the hospital in Simojovel as part of the National Vaccination Program, the IMSS said.

Both the Chiapas Health Secretariat and the IMSS are conducting investigations to identify the cause of the allergic reactions that the babies experienced.

The National Human Rights Commission, or CNDH, also said in a statement released Saturday that it was opening an investigation to determine what caused the babies' deaths.

"Until the investigations are completed, administration of these vaccines has been suspended at the national level as a preventative measure," the IMSS said. EFE