Published: Sun, April 04, 2021
Economy | By

No plans to postpone rollout of AstraZeneca vaccine - Dr Noor Azmi

No plans to postpone rollout of AstraZeneca vaccine - Dr Noor Azmi

In a statement, the UK's Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said that, of 30 reported cases it announced on Friday, "sadly seven have died".

The rising number of blood-clot cases and the moves to suspend or limit shots have added to the uncertainty around the vaccine, which many countries around the world were relying on for their immunization programs.

But it is not clear whether any of the cases are linked to the vaccine.

"The benefits of COVID-19 vaccine AstraZeneca in preventing COVID-19 infection and its complications continue to outweigh any risks and the public should continue to get their vaccine when invited to do so", said Dr. June Raine, the agency's chief executive.

The health ministry estimates that 2.6 million doses of vaccine have now been administered since the campaign started in January.

There were no reports of similar cases after receiving the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

Details of the deaths come as several European countries have paused the use of the jab over a potential link to blood clots.

Kidd said, however, that the blood clotting case is "likely" related to the vaccine.

It involves patients who have low numbers of platelet cells, needed for clotting, in their blood.

"However, if you identify patients with this syndrome in proximity to coronavirus vaccination, it is very important that you complete the online yellow card - this will trigger a request from MHRA for further details". And even if they are, British and European regulators have said they were so rare that the vaccine should continue to be used.

Australia launched mass vaccinations for its 25 million people in February, with most expected to receive the University of Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, as 50 million doses are being produced domestically by CSL Ltd.

AstraZeneca said in mid-March that there was "no evidence" of higher risk of blood clots from its vaccine.

In terms of how to convince other countries of the vaccine's safety, he said: "It's not really our job to persuade other countries".

Though the agency said late Friday that seven people had died as a result of developing blood clots, it didn't disclose any information about their ages or health conditions.

David Werring, a professor at University College London's Institute of Neurology, said that the unusual presentation of the cases in vaccinated people was creating concern about possible links with the shot.

In March, the MHRA said that anyone who has had the vaccination and who then has a headache that lasts for more than four days afterwards, or bruising beyond the site of the vaccination after a few days, should seek medical attention.

"The objective of this complaint is to obtain an additional investigation - in particular an autopsy within a medico-legal framework - so we can know if this vaccine could have had a causal role in her death", added the lawyer.

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