Several EU countries have stopped firing from AstraZeneca while the EMA reviews side effects


A military health worker prepares a dose of Covishield, AstraZeneca / Oxford vaccine against Corona-19 Covid-19, made by the Indian Serum Institute, at a military hospital in Colombo on January 29, 2021.

sign of S. Kodikara | AFP | Getty Images

LONDON – Two additional countries have decided to suspend use AstraZeneca vaccine in Europe on Tuesday due to blood clot concerns, while regulators continued with a new revision of its side effects.

Sweden and Latvia announced on Tuesday morning that they had pausing their presentation AstraZeneca vaccine, developed with the University of Oxford. Portugal, Luxembourg and Slovenia decided to stop the use of shots on Monday night. Earlier in the day, Germany, France, Italy and Spain also joined a group of countries that have stopped using the vaccine.

So far, 13 European Union countries have made this decision, while several others have stopped using individual batches of AstraZeneca vaccines. Austria decided for the first time to suspend the use of a certain series of injections of AstraZeneca last week, after the death of a 49-year-old woman who received this vaccine.

‘Benefits still outweigh risks’

The European health regulator insisted that “the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine in preventing Covid-19, with the associated risk of hospitalization and death, outweigh the risks of side effects.”

In a statement Monday, the European Medicines Agency said it would “further review the information” and convened an emergency meeting on the issue for Thursday. The institution then reiterated its position during a press conference on Tuesday.

“Currently, there are no indications that vaccination has caused these conditions,” said Emer Cooke, director of the European Medicines Agency. “The benefits still outweigh the risks, but this is a serious concern and needs a serious and detailed scientific assessment. That is what we are involved in at the moment.”

She added: “We are concerned that this could affect the trust of vaccines … but our job is to ensure that the products we approve are safe.”

Of course, we need speed, not only for the economy, but mostly for the health of our citizens, but at the same time we need security.

Paolo Gentiloni

EU Commissioner for Economic Affairs

The World Health Organization has called on states to continue vaccination campaigns with AstraZeneca and Oxford University.

A number of EU countries supported the shooting. In Belgium, Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke said on Monday that pausing its use would be “irresponsible”. Although authorities in the Czech Republic have also said they will continue to use the vaccine.

Outside the EU, Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom also gathered in support of AstraZeneca.


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