Norway Extends AstraZeneca Vaccine Suspension For Another 3 Weeks

Norway Extends AstraZeneca Vaccine Suspension For Another 3 Weeks. image: AstraZeneca media

Norway Extends AstraZeneca Vaccine Suspension For Another 3 Weeks.

Norway has extended it’s ban on the use of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine until April 15, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI) has said, amid continuing fears over blood clots.

The Norwegian authorities suspended the rollout of the vaccine on March 11 after a small number of younger inoculated people were hospitalised for a combination of blood clots, bleeding and a low count of platelets, some of whom later died.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has continued to urge countries to carry on using the vaccine, saying the benefits outweigh any potential risks. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has also declared the shot “safe and effective”.

“It is a difficult but correct decision to extend the pause for the AstraZeneca vaccine,” Geir Bukholm, Director of the Division of Infection Control at the FHI, said in a statement on Friday. “We believe it is necessary to carry out more investigations into these cases.”

Norway is one of more than a dozen European countries to have suspended the rollout of the vaccine, although most have since resumed its use on the advice of the EMA. The shot remains on hold in Denmark, however, while other Nordic countries are just using it for older age groups.

 

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Tony Winterburn

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