• September 22, 2023

AstraZeneca defends COVID-19 vaccine after more countries suspend its use over blood clot concerns

AstraZeneca said there is no increased risk of blood clots from its COVID-19 vaccine as the Netherlands and Ireland have joined a rapidly growing list of European countries suspending vaccinations.

In one Explanation late Sunday, AstraZeneca
AZN, + 0.43%
said it checked data on 17 million people in the European Union and the UK who were vaccinated with its shot, which was developed in partnership with Oxford University.

The review “found no evidence of an increased risk of pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis or thrombocytopenia in any particular age group, gender, batch or country,” said the Anglo-Swedish drug maker.

Read: A single dose of the AstraZeneca or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine lowers hospital risk by more than 80%, a study shows

It was reported that 15 deep vein thrombosis events and 22 pulmonary embolism events were reported among those vaccinated. “This is much less than expected for a general population of this size and is similar for other approved COVID-19 vaccines,” the company said.

A careful review of all available safety data on more than 17 million people vaccinated with the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in the European Union and the UK found no evidence of an increased risk of pulmonary embolism, deep vein thrombosis or thrombocytopenia in any particular one Age group, gender, batch or in a specific country.

– AstraZeneca

AstraZeneca shares, which have fallen 5.17% so far this year, were unchanged in London morning trading on Monday.

AstraZeneca’s statement comes after the Netherlands and Ireland joined several other European countries, including Denmark, Norway and IcelandWhen use of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine was interrupted after reports of blood clots, the gunshot was responsible despite the lack of evidence.

Other countries, including Italy and Romania, have stopped using shots from one batch, while Austria has also stopped using cans from a single but different batch.

The Dutch government said on Sunday that AstraZeneca’s vaccine will not be used until March 29 as a precautionary measure. “We cannot leave any doubts about the vaccine,” said Dutch Health Minister Hugo de Jonge, adding: “We have to make sure everything is in order, so it is advisable to take a break for the time being.”

The Dutch Medicines Agency emphasized that no link between the cases and the vaccine has been established.

Read: Irish health authorities recommend suspending AstraZeneca vaccine amid blood clot reports

Hours earlier, Ireland announced it would temporarily suspend use of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine, citing a review by the Norwegian Medicines Agency that found this four new cases of “severe blood clotting in adults”.

Dr. Ronan Glynn, the deputy chief medical officer for the Republic of Ireland, recommended stopping using the vaccine for the time being, but added that it does not completed that there is a link between the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and these cases of blood clotting. “

On Saturday, Norwegian health officials reported that three people who received the AstraZeneca Oxford shot were being treated for severe blood clots and cerebral haemorrhage, but did not know if the cases were vaccine-related. The people who were all “younger” had reduced platelet counts in their blood, the Norwegian Medicines Agency said in one Explanation.

The World health organization On Monday, the advisory panel said it was reviewing reports on the safety of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine and releasing its results as soon as possible as it urged countries not to suspend their immunization programs.

But WHO said that was unlikely to change recommendations, issued February, for widespread adult use of the AstraZeneca-Oxford thrust.

“To date there is no evidence that the incidents are caused by the vaccine, and it is important that the vaccination campaigns continue so that we can save lives and contain serious diseases caused by the virus,” said WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier Reuters.

The European Medicines Agency, which is conducting a review of blood clot incidents, has also stressed that it is “Currently no evidence that vaccination caused these conditions” and has said that the benefits of the vaccine continue to outweigh the risks.

Thailand, one of the first countries outside of Europe to stop using the AstraZeneca Oxford shot last week due to safety concerns, announced Monday that it will start using the vaccine from this week. The prime minister and his cabinet are supposed to be the first to get the shot.

And Northern Ireland said it would continue to use the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine after seeking advice from the UK’s medicines and health products regulator (MHRA).

“We are aware of the action in Ireland,” said Dr. Phil Bryan, safety director for MHRA vaccines, in a statement. “We are scrutinizing the reports, but given the large number of doses given and the frequency with which blood clots can occur naturally, the evidence available does not suggest that the vaccine is the cause.”

Read: AstraZeneca is aiming to meet the EU’s COVID-19 vaccine targets for the second quarter, despite reports

The safety concerns have arisen against the backdrop of vaccine shortages in the EU, including that of BioNTech in Germany
BNTX, + 0.43%
together with its US partner, the pharmaceutical company Pfizer
PFE + 0.40%,
because of manufacturing problems in some plants. The European Commission, the EU’s executive branch, increased its vaccine supply in February when it announced it had signed a contract for an additional 150 million doses of the vaccine manufactured by Moderna
MRNA, + 2.64%
This year, the number of shots secured by U.S. biotechnology for 2021 has almost doubled.

The slow adoption of the EU vaccination program has left several countries vulnerable to spikes in infections. Italy is expected to launch a new lockdown on Monday to contain the spread of the virus and Paris could also face tougher measures as cases increase.

AstraZeneca announced in February that it continues to plan to ship 180 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine to the European Union in the second quarter of the year.

Read: “They thought they were home free and they weren’t.” According to Fauci, the COVID-19 resurgence in Europe is a warning for the US

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